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Hippolytus

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  4,067 ratings  ·  150 reviews
Two book set: individual Commentary and Text. Bryn Mawr Commentaries have been admired and used by Greek and Latin teachers at every level for twenty years. They provide clear, concise, accurate, and consistent support for students making the transition from introductory and intermediate texts to the direct experience of ancient literature. They assume that the student wil ...more
Paperback, 108 pages
Published August 30th 2001 by Bryn Mawr Commentaries, Inc. (first published -428)
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3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,067 ratings  ·  150 reviews


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sologdin
For Euripides, Hippolytus is an intentional and accordingly annoying celibate, whose chastity offends Aphrodite ("All those that live and see the light of the sun / from Atlas' Pillars to the tide of Pontus / are mine to rule" (ll.3-5)). Apparently one is subject to nemesis if one lives out the hubris of this no-fuckin' eidos zoe.

Nemesis in this case comes in the form of unlawful desire created in H's stepmom, Phaedra, who has married H's father, Theseus, who at the opening of this text had bee
...more
Vivian
Greek gods and their pettiness.

Laughing because during Trachean Women I made an off-hand comment about Greek literature being a twisty maze of tales and before I came to an end that I'd run into a minotaur. Ha. Phaedra is the half-sister of the Minotaur. Phaedra, wife of of Thesus is beset upon by the bored and distempered Aphrodite when Theseus' bastard son Hippolytus rejects and ignores her statue in favor of Artemis.

While I personally agree with Hippolytus' choice, it's never a good a idea
...more
  LunaBel
Sep 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Hippolytus


Never take hasty decisions
Never judge too fast
For the consequences may be
Greater than you can bear.

 
Tarnished by pride, Hippolytus dares to defy Aphrodite. He refuses to show due respect to her, so she obtains revenge. She uses his father’s wife to bring him to his doom, and in this ordeal, many a person meets their death.
 
Phaedra and Hippolytus fight in a game of gods and both die because of Aphrodite's and Artemis's caprices. The proud gods take revenge on others through playing wi
...more
David Sarkies
Apr 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of Greek Drama
Recommended to David by: David Hester
Shelves: tragedy
Sexuality & Celibacy
17 April 2012

I should mention that technically this play should come under 'I' as opposed to 'H' (and I almost put it under 'I' without thinking) namely because Greek does not actually have an 'H'. What they have are rough and smooth breathings, which is a little symbol that appears at the front of a word that begins with a vowel. If the word has a smooth breathing it is pronounced without an H while if it has a rough breathing it is pronounced with an H. You have probab
...more
Markus
Oct 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Hippolytus

By Euripides
First presented in 428 BC

I have reread this tragedy shortly after I had read the play of ‘Phaedra’ by Racine.

Euripides work is an extremely beautiful reading pleasure and provides a very colorfully painted picture of events.
Especially the chorus and coryphe give the reader a feeling of participation.
The distribution of the drama is quite different from Racine’s play.
The actors are Theseus, the great Athenian hero, Phaedra his second wife, Hippolytus, her stepson, son of
...more
Meg
"Besides I knew
too well I was a woman, and must be
abhorred by all."


Euripides never lets me down.

The full title of the edition I read is "Hippolytus in Drama and Myth." It's translated by Donald Sutherland and includes an essay by Hazel E. Barnes.

The base myth of the eponymous Hippolytus portrays him as a shining exemplar of virtuousness and chastity, a kind of saint. The story goes like this: his stepmother Phaedra falls in love with him but he rejects her advances, and in revenge, she
...more
Maan Kawas
Aug 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful play with a simple plot but too many meanings & intertwined themes! It is a play about human emotions & feelings (e.g. jealousy, passion, anger, shame) and characteristics (e.g. impulsiveness), as well as it is a play about the human condition (subject to the will of deity). Moreover, it is about relationships, the relationship between people, between man and gods, and the relationships between the gods themselves. Human are subject to gods’ rules, decisions, and orders, and ...more
Steven
"Many a time in night's long empty spaces
I have pondered on the causes of a life's shipwreck.
I think that our lives are worse than the mind's quality
would warrant. There are many who know good sense.
But look. We know the good, we see it clear.
But we can't bring it to achievement."
Hippolytus tells the story of Theseus' wife Phaedra, who is put under a love-spell by the vengeful Aphrodite after the latter is spurned by Phaedra's stepson Hyppolytus. Sick with love for her stepson, Phaedra is at h
...more
Sharon Barrow Wilfong
Once again, the gods ruin everyone's lives and also cause their tragic death by execution or suicide. Sucks being an ancient Greek.

Hippolytus worships Artemis, the Virgin goddess and out of devotion remains chaste. Aphrodite considers this as a personal affront and decides to avenge herself against him by causing his stepmother, Phaedra, to fall in love with him.

While his father, Theseus is away, Phaedra, after spending pages lamenting her lot and helpless desire confides to her nurse, who then
...more
Lela
Sep 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lela by: Dr. Damen
Oh, Euripides. You're so good at making totally crazy characters. For this story though, it's the Nurse. Her advice is not advisable...poor Hipploytus. I enjoyed this tragedy probably moreso because of reading Medea. I keep noticing things that feel similar like the rebuking of women's lust, the self-harming acts of spite, the roles of family being corrrupted (mother's relationship to their children), and the way that love can destroy people. Medea follows Jason and leaves everything because she ...more
Keely
Jun 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: greek-plays
3.75 stars. Hippolytus is definitely one of my favourite plays by Euripides. I love how Euripides gives a human dimension to Greek Gods. No two Gods are as different as Artemis and Aphrodite, and their friction provided a great foundation for the drama that occurred. I was not a fan of Hippolytus himself but other than that this play was excellent. I even think I wrote more notes for it than for the Bacchae, which is saying something.
Daisy
"Show forgiveness.
If someone in his youthful and impetuous spirit
Addresses you foolishly, pretend not to hear him.
For gods should be wiser than mortals."

Recently, I've been delving into Ancient Greek Comedy, and have emerged clutching my sides with laughter, but also with wonder that something written over 2000 years ago could appear so witty and lively to me today. And so I approached this - my first experience of Ancient Greek Tragedy - with low expectations. I thought it highly unlikely
...more
Anand
Jun 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read of the story in Seneca’s drama Phaedra, yet to me Euripides’ Hippolytus has a real superiority, in general because of the final Theseus-Hippolytus conversation, the concerns with shame and reputation, and aidos, and the intense portrait of a lawless passion connected to Eros and Aphrodite, and more.
Suzanne
Mar 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: classics
I once saw someone describe Hippolytus as a fedora-wearing MRA, and that pretty much sums up this play. Phaedra herself is full of internalised misogyny. As always in Euripides, the nature of the gods is very interesting. I have studied Greek tragedy for years, and I do not understand why, out of all Euripides' plays, Hippolytus is considered his masterpiece.
Maliha
Aug 20, 2008 rated it liked it
I had to read it for my Greek Tragedies class. The character of the Nurse is pretty cool.
Mike
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-owned
Despite the noble act of forgiveness advocated in in the final moments, I found this drama to be mostly lacking energy and emotional verve. I think part of the reason was the choice to keep Theseus from entering until halfway through the drama. I realize that he must be “away” from certain events to transpire, but we are left with little development of his relationship with either Hippolytus or Phaedra. The other problem I had was the Hippolytus is actually the least interesting character in the ...more
Olivia Hofer
I'm hovering between two and three stars for this one. It lacks the taut storytelling in Jean Racine's retelling of the story in Phaedra, and Hippolytos' first appearance on stage set the wrong tone for the rest of his characterization (though quite possibly the original audience would have thought differently). Euripides does manage surprisingly well to keep a sense of continuity despite the shift in on-stage cast midway through the play. Overall, Racine handled the story with greater skill and ...more
The Artisan Geek
Aug 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
11/8/2019
I'm not too sure if I will add a complete review to this one, but I didn't like the depiction of most characters.

Zack
Jan 15, 2018 rated it liked it
If nothing but Euripides had survived from Ancient Greece, I think it would have been okay.
Aneece
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: play
"Life is ugly and disease revolts me" is an excellent tagline for the film adaptation.

The conniving, busybody nurse seems to be the pattern for that other failed intriguer in Romeo and Juliet.
Christopher Condit
Dec 03, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: greek-tragedy
Plotting is particularly weak, but the poesy comes through nice and sharp.
Falk
Review of Michael R. Halleran's translation of Euripides' Hippolytus (Focus Classical Library, 2001.) - Halleran's translation is very readable, and he provides brief, but good and helpful notes. This is a revised version of his 1995 translation (Aris and Philips), which also included the Greek text. This newer edition is directed to a wider readership and features a very useful Introduction where Euripides' earlier, now lost, version of Hippolytus (sometimes called 'Hippolytus Veiled') is also ...more
Sarah
Oct 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: greek-drama
Hippolytus is the story of the title character, who is caught up in a weird, slightly incestuous situation, as his step-mother falls violently in love with him due to interference with Aphrodite. By this point, any reader knows that mentions of incest are not too uncommon in Greek drama of any kind (if this case even technically counts as incest), but I feel that the main reason these kinds of situations show up is to present a warning against this. Perhaps in a historical sense, this was an iss ...more
David Alexander
Oct 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
There are moments in the play where lines and the dramatic moment reached me and I recognized through the ageless dust something said of man's estate true, true still, and seemingly ever-Now. (But there are those today who will argue our evolution has made Euripides and all that ancient crowd irrelevant. It is not them that clear and cool the mind which such keen, millennia-cleaving arrows of insight).
I'm also personally struck by parallels with Scripture often when I read this ancient literatu
...more
Erik Graff
Dec 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: classical drama & Euripides fans
Recommended to Erik by: Maurice Lieberman
Shelves: drama
Hippolytus was assigned reading for freshman Humanities at Grinnell College. Having already read Aeschylus, Sophocles and Aritotle's essay on the character of tragedy, I was not much impressed. Euripides read like the script of soap opera. Too much hinged on divine interference and over-scrupulous moralism. By the latter I mean people keeping their oaths when breaking them might have prevented disaster--a moral dilemma to be sure, but one in which the disproportion is obvious. Our class spent mu ...more
Sean Chick
Mar 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
It has the strengths of a Euripides play. It is an easy read and rich in context. Unfortunately the story did little for me, the characters being more like archetypes which I think hurts a drama about complex human feelings. Yet there was one theme that resonated: a man choosing his hobby/passion/work over love and the dire consequences of such a choice. That being said I respect the play but I wish it had moved me in some way.
JP
May 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Magnificent. Both this and Bacchae seem to personify the gods better than any other tragic author. The Hippolytus won competition in 428bc and I can understand why. It is a very moving work -- particularly this version by David Grene (University of Chicago Press)
Paul LaFontaine
Jul 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
Did not like this one. Another play where gods come down and play with man, tempting and withholding. Not my thing.
Ken
Apr 27, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Matthew
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Humanity has always had a peculiar relationship with the gods that they worship, and a large part of that peculiarity lies in fear. In our own age we are told to both love and fear our gods, a peculiar arrangement that most of us would be unhappy to accept in any relationship with a fellow human being.

The Ancient Greeks were more honest than us, in that they feared their gods but did not love them. They paid the necessary respects and rites to the gods in order to avoid punishment, but there was
...more
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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
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“There is one thing alone that stands the brunt of life throughout its course; a quiet conscience.” 15 likes
“I have pondered on the causes of a life's shipwreck. I think that our lives are worse than the mind's quality would warrant. There are many who know virtue. We know the good, we apprehend it clearly. But we can't bring it to achievement.” 4 likes
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