Aeschylus I

ISBN-10: 0226307786

ISBN-13: 9780226307787

Edition: 2nd

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"These authoritative translations consign all other complete collections to the wastebasket."—Robert Brustein, The New Republic "This is it. No qualifications. Go out and buy it everybody."—Kenneth Rexroth, The Nation "The translations deliberately avoid the highly wrought and affectedly poetic; their idiom is contemporary....They have life and speed and suppleness of phrase."—Times Education Supplement "These translations belong to our time. A keen poetic sensibility repeatedly quickens them; and without this inner fire the most academically flawless rendering is dead."—Warren D. Anderson, American Oxonian "The critical commentaries and the versions themselves...are fresh, unpretentious, above all, functional."—Commonweal "Grene is one of the great translators."—Conor Cruise O'Brien, London Sunday Times "Richmond Lattimore is that rara avis in our age, the classical scholar who is at the same time an accomplished poet."—Dudley Fitts, New York Times Book Review
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Book details

List price: $13.00
Edition: 2nd
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 5/15/1969
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 180
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 0.25" tall
Weight: 0.638
Language: English

Aeschylus was born at Eleusis of a noble family. He fought at the Battle of Marathon (490 b.c.), where a small Greek band heroically defeated the invading Persians. At the time of his death in Sicily, Athens was in its golden age. In all of his extant works, his intense love of Greece and Athens finds expression. Of the nearly 90 plays attributed to him, only 7 survive. These are The Persians (produced in 472 b.c.), Seven against Thebes (467 b.c.), The Oresteia (458 b.c.)---which includes Agamemnon, Libation Bearers, and Eumenides (or Furies) --- Suppliants (463 b.c.), and Prometheus Bound (c.460 b.c.). Six of the seven present mythological stories. The ornate language creates a mood of tragedy and reinforces the already stylized character of the Greek theater. Aeschylus called his prodigious output "dry scraps from Homer's banquet," because his plots and solemn language are derived from the epic poet. But a more accurate summation of Aeschylus would emphasize his grandeur of mind and spirit and the tragic dignity of his language. Because of his patriotism and belief in divine providence, there is a profound moral order to his plays. Characters such as Clytemnestra, Orestes, and Prometheus personify a great passion or principle. As individuals they conflict with divine will, but, ultimately, justice prevails. Aeschylus's introduction of the second actor made real theater possible, because the two could address each other and act several roles. His successors imitated his costumes, dances, spectacular effects, long descriptions, choral refrains, invocations, and dialogue. Swinburne's (see Vol. 1) enthusiasm for The Oresteia sums up all praises of Aeschylus; he called it simply "the greatest achievement of the human mind." Because of his great achievements, Aeschylus might be considered the "father of tragedy."

Graham Hurley is an award-winning TV documentary maker who now writes full time. He is married and has grown up children. He lived in Portsmouth for 20 years but now lives in Exmouth, Devon.David Grene (1913–2002) taught classics for many years at the University of Chicago. He was a founding member of the Committee on Social Thought and coedited the University of Chicago Press’s prestigious series The Complete Greek Tragedies.

Introduction
Agamemnon
The Libation Bearers
The Eumenides
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