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SB^2 Study - Ancient Greek Plays

SB^2 Study - Ancient Greek Plays - Term Definition THE...

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Term: THE FROGS Definition: Dionysus wants to bring playwright Euripides back from the dead. Enlists help of Xanthius (a slave) and Heracles. While on the River Styx w/ Charon, Dionysus hears the chorus of the titular creatures. Discovers ongoing conflict b/w Euripides and Aeschylus ("who's-the-best-playwright"). Aeacus tries to kill Dionysus. Contest arranged b/w playwrights to see who can write/speak the "weightier" line. Aeschylus wins b/c he gives practical answers. Aeschylus returns to Athens. Term: THE CLOUDS Definition: Faced with legal action for non-payment of debts, Strepsiades, an elderly Athenian, enrolls his son in The Thinkery (the "Phrontisterion") so that he might learn the rhetorical skills necessary to defeat their creditors in court. The son thereby learns cynical disrespect for social mores and contempt for authority and he subsequently beats his father up during a domestic argument, in return for which Strepsiades sets The Thinkery on fire.
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Term: THE BIRDS Definition: Pisthetaerus, a middle-aged Athenian, persuades the world's birds to create a new city in the sky, thereby gaining control over all communications between men and gods. He is miraculously transformed into a bird-like figure and, with the help of his friends, the birds, and with advice from Prometheus, he soon replaces Zeus as the pre-eminent power in the cosmos. Term: THE ORESTIA Definition: Set of three plays written by Aeschylus telling about Agamemnon's murder and Orestes' revenge.
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Term: AGAMEMNON Definition: A watchmen learns from a beacon that the Trojan war has ended. The chorus tell of how the titular king killed his daughter for fair winds to sail to Troy. The titular character's wife orders a sacrifice to celebrate the fall of Ilium. A Herald then tells the chorus that a storm left the titular king's brother missing. The titular character returns with Cassandra, a Trojan princess he has taken as his concubine. He then scolds his wife. The king and queen then enter the dining hall. Cassandra then predicts the title entity's death, her death, and the return of an avenger. The chorus then hears the dying cries of their king. His wife then reappears saying she has avenged the death of her daughter and continues to rule her husband's kingdom with her lover. The chorus declares that the queen and king's son will return to avenge his father.
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Term: THE LIBATION BEARERS (CHOEPHORAE) Definition: Years after the murder of the king of Athens, his son Orestes returns to mourn at his father's grave. He has been living in exile and is returning to Athens in secret, sent by an oracle of Apollo. He must exact vengeance for his father's death, or be subjugated to Apollo's threats. At his father's grave, Orestes meets his sister Electra for the first time in years. Electra then says their mother sent her to pour libations on the grave to quiet the queen's dreams. The two siblings plot their vengeance. Orestes says he will gain admission to the palace and kill his mother's new husband on the throne.
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