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The Bacchae and Other Plays (Complete Euripides, Vol 4)

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  2,831 ratings  ·  45 reviews
Collected here for the first time in the series are three major plays by Euripides: Bacchae, translated by Reginald Gibbons and Charles Segal, a powerful examination of the horror and beauty of Dionysiac ecstasy; Herakles, translated by Tom Sleigh and Christian Wolff, a violent dramatization of the madness and exile of one of the most celebrated mythical figures; and The P ...more
Hardcover, 364 pages
Published February 1st 2009 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published -405)
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Bryn Hammond
The Bacchae

- I have seen the holy Bacchae, who like a flight of spears
Went streaming bare-limbed, frantic, out of the city gate.

- What, woman? What was that you said? Do you exult
When such a cruel fate has overtaken the king?
- I am no Greek.
I sing my joy in a foreign tune.

- When bull led man to the ritual slaughter-ring.

He'd have been my god, were I Greek (or one of these foreign women). Even without him, I believe that his forces or his spheres, unacknowledged, are dangerous; whether religiou
The Bacchae is one of the most disturbing plays in the ancient Greek genre. Euripides delves into the religiousity of the time with the " beware of spying on secret rites". The other three plays, Ion, The Women of Troy and Helen, are noble but not as good.
John Pistelli
I wanted to read The Bacchae because I had a sense that it had something to do with Dostoevsky's Demons , which I recently finished. It did, in the sense that both works tell the story of a city visited by Dionysian frenzy. In Euripides's drama, the frenzy is Dionysus's revenge on the women of Thebes for insulting his mother by claiming that she lied when she said that Zeus was his father. The dramatic conflict centers on Pentheus, king of the city and grandson of its founder, who wants to supp ...more
Wael Mahmoud
I wrote a review for each play here

Ion by Euripides The Trojan Women by Euripides Helen by Euripides Bacchae by Euripides

Euripides not as good as Sophocles but he's better than Aeschylus.

I didn't like the translation, all other old Greek plays i've read were translated better than those ones.
Love it, in all it’s violent pagan glory. There is so much about Dionysus that points to Christ. I love seeing the fingerprints of God in ancient literature.
Some of the stories were interesting, but the only one that was a real Greek tragedy was the Bacchae. The other stories were all happy ending types (well women of troy wasn't super happy). The Bacchae really helped me understand the wrath of the gods. It really showed how powerful they are. I think everyone should read the Bacchae but the other stories can be skipped.
I simply cannot wait until I read more of Euripides plays (Ancient Greek plays in general, actually). Brilliant translation and collection of plays.
If you're a big nerd like me and love Greek and roman mythology. Then please read this!! It's a book detailing the life of Dionysus. I love his story. I read this for school and I enjoyed studying this a lot.

SIDE NOTE: for all my True Blood fans out there, you'll appreciate season 2 of the show if you know about Dionysus.
Peter Kolesnikov

Love the Bacchae! Any festival temporarily liberating and empowering women must have given the men in ancient Greece a serious case of the heebie jeebies. Euripides knew this and exploited it in this play. Beautifully done.
I only read The Bacchae this time. The more Greek tragedy I read, the more I wonder if there is a Theban complex where people have bizzare relationships with their mothers. Guess I better take a trip!
I can't believe this was written so long ago.

Different millennium, same blame game for rape victims.
Brandon Kendall
beware the dangers of denying the godhood of Dionysos!! god of wine and uncontrollable emotions..madness!
Karan Gupta
Euripides happened to me first in a bookshop in Kamla Nagar. I had just resumed reading then. I found his plays extremely poetic and interesting. My fascination for mythology was an ever-present factor of course. I had picked Bacche in the Delhi Book Fair long back. I picked it up recently, after I had become better acquainted with the Greek mythology.

The book consists of four plays : Iphigenia among the Taurians (IT), Bacchae, Iphigenia at Aulis (IA) and Rhesus. IA and IT talk about the house o
Bill bought me this book before we went and saw Alan Cumming in the play so I would be familiar with the story. At first I found it very strange. I don’t know much about ancient Greece, picking up references here and there. Years ago in high school I took a mythology class (which was mainly Greek and Roman) and attempted the Odyssey and the Iliad. I read the play before we saw it, and I think I enjoyed it more for knowing the story and being able to recognise certain lines of dialogue. It helped ...more
Eliza Abendroth
Greek mythology really isn't my sort of thing, but this was decently easy to follow and not entirely uninteresting
Loafers Of London
I first studied the Bacchae when I was in school and loved it. 5 years later, I love it even more.
Logan Dalton
Like all Greek plays, there is lots of exposition and Deus ex Machina. However, Euripides does an excellent job exploring the human condition in a chaotic and sometimes violent world. Some of his plays even have happy endings (Ion and Helen). Trojan Women is a powerful look at grief. Helen makes one of the most hated characters in fiction sympathetic and human. Ion shows the flipside of gods having affairs and human perceptions of them. Bacchae is the best of the bunch and explores the irrationa ...more
What is more terrible - a world with vengeful gods, or a world without them?
The last play, the Bacchae, was not all that marvelous, but the others: The Women of Troy, Helen, and Ion, were great.
Derek Folder
Lovely writing and mythological content in three four tragedies.
'Bacchae', 'Phoenician Women', and 'Hercules'

Menna Rempt
Great translation, reads very nicely.
All of these plays are excellent and the translations really do them justice. If you ever read the Helen, go and read Aristophanes' Thesmophoriazusae (The Poet and the Women), it benefits from it hugely.
The Bacchae, however, is in a league of its own. If you never read any other of Euripides' plays, you must read the Bacchae.
Danielle Mathieson
The Bacchae

"O Dionysus, reveal yourself a bull! Be manifest, a snake with darting heads, a lion breathing fire!
O Bacchus, come! Come with your smile! Cast your noose about this man who hunts your Bacchae! Bring him down, trampled underfoot by the murderous herd of your Maenads!"
For a Greek tragedy, "The Bacchae" is pretty awesome. I enjoy the fact that both Pentheus and Agaue got what they deserved--Pentheus for being a jerk to Dionysus' face, and Agaue for defaming the name of her own sister, Semele, before the play begins. Bad news all around.
My edition contained 4 plays of Euripides - Ion, The Trojan Women, Helen and The Bacchae. I had mixed feelings about them and thought that each play went downhill, in the order that I read them above. Overall, still a fantastic worth while read.
I love Euripides. He's the most "modern" of the ancient playwrights and his characters are pretty powerful, scary at times and still relevant today. It's amazing how little human nature has changed over the millennia.
Cassandra Kay Silva
Interesting collection, I was really impressed and swooned by Achilles in one of these plays, he came across as a mega hero stud. I also thought the Bacchae itself was very playful. These were wonderful though tragic.
This was the weirdest of the three books that contained greek tragedies that I read. Not really my cup of tea but it was written well, just the story line was super weird.
The God teaches Thebes and its ruler, Pentheus, a lesson nobody will ever forget.

To my mind, the greatest play extant.

Go Dionysos!
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(Greek: Ευριπίδης )
Euripides (Ancient Greek: Εὐριπίδης) (ca. 480 BC–406 BC) was the last of the three great tragedians of classical Athens (the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles). Ancient scholars thought that Euripides had written ninety-five plays, although four of those were probably written by Critias. Eighteen of Euripides' plays have survived complete. It is now widely believed that wh
More about Euripides...
Medea Medea and Other Plays Bacchae Euripides 1: Alcestis/The Medea/The Heracleidae/Hippolytus The Trojan Women

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