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Menander
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Selected Fragments (Oxford Classical Texts)

3.6  ·  Rating details ·  489 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Menander was the greatest writer of Attic New Comedy in the late fourth century B.C., yet it was not until the twentieth century and the discoveries of papyri in Egypt that even a sizable fragment of his work became available for study. Today, one complete play, the Dyskolos ("The Bad Tempered Man"), and considerable fragments from fourteen other plays survive. This revise ...more
Hardcover, 356 pages
Published December 21st 1972 by Oxf.U.P. (first published -316)
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Yann
Jul 23, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bien avant Molière, mais aussi avant Plaute et Térence, Ménandre a été l'auteur de comédie de mœurs plébiscitées par ses contemporains, certains comme Plutarque n'hésitant même pas à la placer juste après Homère. C'est que les pièces de cet élève de Théophraste, successeur d'Aristote au Lycée d'Athène, contiennent tout les éléments propres à donner du plaisir au spectateur, en illustrant les travers de l'habitude, les désordres de l'amour, la rouerie des esclaves. Le malheur est que la plupart d ...more
Keith
Aug 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Menander’s plays are light comedic material later expanded on by Plautus, Terrence, Shakespeare, Sheridan and others. He is part of the tradition that led to the comedy of manners and later to farce. (But no twins, as far as I know.) They are generally safe – conservative, non-political, and traditional. His works are mildly entertaining, but not required reading except for historians of drama.


Dyskolus/The Grouch/Old Cantankerous *** – This is an entertaining play with the title character being
...more
Taka
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, 2017, comedy
Old Cantankerous, the only play we have almost all lines intact of, was a disappointment, as it felt like an immature work, but other plays, though fragmented, presented a MUCh mature and master playwright in control of his craft. Quite frustrated that those really interesting plays (like The Girl from Samos, The Arbitration, The Rape of the Locks, and delightfully promising The Double Deceivers didn't survive the ravages of time in whole and are badly fragmented.
Chris
May 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Bitter Old Man was biting and very funny, but the rest of Menander's works are formulaoc and shrug worthy.
Jon Catherwood-Ginn
"THE GROUCH"

In a word, Menander's only full-length extant play "The Grouch" was incredibly formulaic. While Aristophanes' "Old Comedy" was invigorating--bubbling over with comic potential in its topical focus, satirical assault on political figures, and audience provocation typified by the new-found parabasis--"New Comedy" (as embodied in its first patron saint, Menander) was predictable, generic, and essentially unmoored from anything of consequence (i.e. time, place, people, etc.). I totally u
...more
The Reader
Feb 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would guess that Menander's realism and humanism was the point in question; Homer was thought to have actually experienced everything he wrote about because it's so vivid.
Mike
Mar 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-owned
In Old Cantankerous/Dyskolos, Menander has given Western drama not only the structure of just about every comedy for the next two millennia, but also a classic character type: the misanthropic "get off my lawn" old man. (Quite literally! Our first introduction to Knemon in Act One is a description of how he chased some guy off his property by hurling stones, clods of dirt, and rotten fruit. He then goes on to kick everyone off his damn lawn. I kinda love the guy.) On every page we see material t ...more
Vittorio Ducoli
Dec 09, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Come un libro di testo

Libro che permette di entrare nel mondo delle commedie di un autore meno noto di Aristofane ma che sa costruire intrecci piacevoli e godibili, anche se purtroppo molti testi sono mutili.
Un grande aiuto a comprendere i testi e la loro collocazione storica e filologica viene dalla introduzione di Guido Paduano, un vero e proprio saggio che consiglio di leggere prima delle commedie. Anche le note che accompagnano il testo, che pure a volte sono molto specialistiche, servono a
...more
David Kowalski
Jan 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ok. Well if you're reading reviews on this work you know what's what. Theophrastus took over Aristotle's school. All his works are lost besides these brief dark sketched of Athenian archetypes that hold true two thousand years later. Kitto, in his wonderful eponymous introduction to The Greeks recommends this work and who am I to disagree.

Now... Menander. Quoted by us from time to time in ignorance, a foundation for the Roman theatre that followed, paraphrased by Shakespeare in Hamlet no less.
...more
Jesse
Jun 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Second only to Homer," so the ancients said. Why did they say this? I would guess that Menander's realism and humanism was the point in question; Homer was thought to have actually experienced everything he wrote about because it's so vivid. Similarly, these are comedies that are meant to make you smile and appreciate the vivid colors of human interaction - a world away from the fantastic bombast of Aristophanes. While I prefer the latter, this mature, sophisticated style was written when the h ...more
Trounin
Sep 20, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Зачем серчать на современных авторов? Их творчество трудно оценить уже в силу того, что его нельзя трактовать в срезе происходящих в обществе изменений. От этого и случаются все недовольства. Читатель должен понимать хлипкость литературных рамок, должных в будущем рухнуть. Только время оставит в воспоминаниях труды достойных или счастливчиков, чьи произведения переживут века. Наглядный пример — культура Древнего мира, дошедшая до нас по обрывочным свидетельствам, при этом многое было навсегда ут ...more
Mario
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drama, comedy, greek
It may not be entirely comprehensible, and far too much has been lost over time (not just in the technical sense that what we have is full of gaping holes, but in the fact that we really have no idea how contemporary viewers would interpret the various allusions and situations presented (and whatever allusions we can't even see because even that source has been lost ... ugh)), but I'm still glad I read it.
Katie Pagan
All right...pretty funny, but I'm disturbed by how much Greek New Comedy relies on sexual exploitation (e.g. rape) as a funny plot device. I know, you have to remove yourself from your modern views and put yourself in the shoes of the original audience. But still. However, The Bad-Tempered Man is quite amusing, and the hero of the story is not a rapist, but actually rather adorable.
Johannes Bertus
Father of the bad sitcom.
David
Jul 19, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: greek-roman
Menander is a treat to read although some of the work here is in fragments.
Lucian McMahon
May 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dyskolos.
Alyssa Haverfield
Jan 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I've only read Old Cantankerous.
S
342 – 291 BCE

Penguin
Norma Miller, trans
l.
Jul 29, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: plays, 2010, classics
I guess I can appreciate this on some level but that doesn't make reading it any less painful.
Smallsalome
Nov 05, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theatre
I just read Dyskolos. And I liked the character play. This is the author from whom for example Moliere took inspiration.
Winnie Alston
rated it it was amazing
Oct 26, 2016
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81914
Greek: Μένανδρος
Menander (ca. 342–291 BC), the best-known representative of Athenian New Comedy, was the son of well-to-do parents; his father Diopeithes is identified by some with the Athenian general and governor of the Thracian Chersonese known from the speech of Demosthenes De Chersoneso. He presumably derived his taste for comic drama from his uncle Alexis.
More about Menander...
“He whom the gods love dies young.” 25 likes
“Whom the gods love dies young” 4 likes
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