Hippolytos

ISBN-10: 0195072901

ISBN-13: 9780195072907

Edition: 1992 (Reprint)

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Description: In most versions of the Hippolytos myth, Phaidra is depicted as an utterly debauched character, a woman reduced to shamelessness by the power of Aphrodite. In Euripides' Hippolytos, however--informed by the playwright's moral and religious fascination--we find a Phaidra resisting the goddess of love with all her strength, though in the end unsuccessfully. Phaidra becomes a tragic foil for Hippolytos, making his superhuman virtue at once believable and understandable. Robert Bagg's profound translation of this Euripidean masterpiece is idiomatic, natural, and intensely lyrical, designed not only to be read but performed. Unlike most versions, Bagg's Hippolytos sustains the dramatic tome and dynamics to the very end--even after Phaidra's death--and the moving scenes between Hippolytos and Theseus, and later Hippolytos' death-scene with Artemis, receive here unprecedented plausibility and power.

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Book details

List price: $14.99
Copyright year: 1992
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 10/29/1992
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 128
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.242
Language: English

Euripides, one of the three great Greek tragedians was born in Attica probably in 485 B.C. of well-to-do parents. In his youth he cultivated gymnastic pursuits and studied philosophy and rhetoric. Soon after he received recognition for a play that he had written, Euripides left Athens for the court of Archelaus, king of Macedonia. In his tragedies, Euripides represented individuals not as they ought to be but as they are. His excellence lies in the tenderness and pathos with which he invested many of his characters. Euripides' attitude toward the gods was iconoclastic and rationalistic; toward humans-notably his passionate female characters-his attitude was deeply sympathetic. In his dramas, Euripides separated the chorus from the action, which was the first step toward the complete elimination of the chorus. He used the prologue as an introduction and explanation. Although Euripides has been charged with intemperate use of the deus ex machina, by which artifice a god is dragged in abruptly at the end to resolve a situation beyond human powers, he created some of the most unforgettable psychological portraits. Fragments of about fifty-five plays survive; some were discovered as recently as 1906. Among his best-known plays are Alcestis (438 B.C.), Medea and Philoctetes (431 B.C.), Electra (417 B.C.), Iphigenia in Tauris (.413 B.C.), The Trojan Women (415 B.C.), and Iphigenia in Aulis Iphigenia (c.405 B.C.). Euripides died in Athens in 406. Shortly after his death his reputation rose and has never diminished.

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