The Oresteia of Aeschylus

The Oresteia of Aeschylus

2.6 5
by Aeschylus
     
 

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The Oresteia - Agamemnon, Choephori, and The Eumenides - depicts the downfall of the house of Atreus: after King Agamemnon is murdered by Clytemnestra, their son, Orestes, is commanded by Apollo to avenge the crime by killing his mother, and he does so, bringing on himself the wrath of the Furies and the judgment of Athens. Together, the three plays are one of the… See more details below

Overview

The Oresteia - Agamemnon, Choephori, and The Eumenides - depicts the downfall of the house of Atreus: after King Agamemnon is murdered by Clytemnestra, their son, Orestes, is commanded by Apollo to avenge the crime by killing his mother, and he does so, bringing on himself the wrath of the Furies and the judgment of Athens. Together, the three plays are one of the major achievements of Greek antiquity.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
British Poet Laureate Hughes translated this great Greek trilogy before his death in October 1998. Agamemnon, Choephori, and The Eumenides, written in 468 B.C.E., tell the story of the blood feud within the House of Atreus. It begins with Agamemnon's murder by his wife, Clytemnestra, followed by their son Orestes' matricide and the final judgment by a jury of Athenian citizens. These tragedies show ancient Greek views on the power and mercy of deities in deciding human fate. Notable for its poetic beauty and compassion; Hughes's superb lyric translation is a refreshing read for a contemporary English literary and theater audience. Other earlier translations were by Robert Lowell (1978) and Richard Lattimore (1954). With production details unseen at the time of this review, this translation's claim to be another "acting version" of the trilogy remains to be validated. However, based on Hughes's literary reputation and the beauty of the text, this new English translation is a worthy acquisition for all public and academic libraries.--Ming-ming Shen Kuo, Ball State Univ. Lib., Muncie, IN Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Though it's tempting to imagine the late English poet laureate's long tortured relationship with the image of (his wife) feminist heroine Sylvia Plath as its subtext, this vivid free-verse translation of Aeschylus' dark and bloody tragic trilogy (comprising Agamemnon, Choephori, and Eumenides) more properly evinces Hughes's wide range of interests and mastery of classic literatures. His nearly conversational rhythms produce an arresting mixture of colloquialism and formality, enlivened by strong imagery (as in the matricidal Orestes' declaration that "This house has been the goblet / That the demon of homicide, unquenchable, / Has loved to drain"), and only infrequently weakened by astonishing woodenness—as in Clytemnestra's cool reply to the Chorus who lament her murder of her husband: "You think I'm an irresponsible woman? / You are making a mistake"). Perhaps not the ultimate "acting edition" it claims to be, but, still, an essential further installment in the always interesting oeuvre of a gifted poet who was also a diligent scholar.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940017318973
Publisher:
New York : Longmans, Green
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
0 MB

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