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A Guide to Ancient Greek Drama



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What version or edition is this?

This is the 2nd edition with a publication date of 1/7/2014.

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This newly updated second edition features wide-ranging, systematically organized scholarship in a concise introduction to ancient Greek drama, which flourished from the sixth to third century BC.

  • Covers all three genres of ancient Greek drama – tragedy, comedy, and satyr-drama
  • Surveys the extant work of Aeschylus, Sophokles, Euripides, Aristophanes, and Menander, and includes entries on ‘lost’ playwrights
  • Examines contextual issues such as the origins of dramatic art forms; the conventions of the festivals and the theater; drama’s relationship with the worship of Dionysos; political dimensions of drama; and how to read and watch Greek drama
  • Includes single-page synopses of every surviving ancient Greek play

Author Biography

Ian C. Storey is Emeritus Professor of Classics and Ancient History at Trent University, Canada. The author of Eupolis: Poet of Old Comedy (2003), Euripides’ Suppliant Women (2008), and The Fragments of Old Comedy (2011), he has published numerous papers on Euripides, Old Comedy, and the fiction of C. S. Lewis.

Arlene Allan is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Classics at Otago University, New Zealand, where she teaches ancient Greek literature and mythology, as well as ancient Greek and Latin.

Table of Contents


List of Figures

List of Maps & Plans

Abbreviations and Signs

1 Aspects Of Ancient Greek Drama


The Dramatic Festivals

The Theatrical Space

The Performance

Drama, Dionysos and the Polis

2 Greek Tragedy

On the Nature of Greek Tragedy




The Other Tragedians

3 The Satyr-Drama

4 Greek Comedy


Old Comedy

The Generations of Old Comedy


Greek Comedy and the Phlyax-vases

Middle Comedy

Menander and New Comedy

5 Approaching Greek Drama

Formal Criticism

Interdisciplinary Approaches

Visual Interpretations

Reception Studies

6 Play Synopses

Aeschylus’ Persians

Aeschylus’ Seven against Thebes

Aeschylus’ Suppliants

Aeschylus’ Oresteia

Aeschylus’ Agamemnon

Aeschylus’ Libation-Bearers (Choephoroe)

Aeschylus’ Eumenides (Furies)

Sophokles’ Ajax

Sophokles’ Antigone

Sophokles’ Trachinian Women

Sophokles’ Oedipus Tyrannos

Sophokles’ Elektra

Sophokles’ Philoktetes

Sophokles’ Oedipus at Kolonos

Euripides’ Alkestis

Euripides’ Medea

Euripides’ Children of Herakles

Euripides’ Hippolytos

Euripides’ Andromache

Euripides’ Hecuba

Euripides’ Suppliant Women

Euripides’ Elektra

Euripides’ Herakles

Euripides’ Trojan Women

Euripides’ Iphigeneia among the Taurians

Euripides’ Ion

Euripides’ Helen

Euripides’ Phoenician Women

Euripides’ Orestes

Euripides’ Iphigeneia at Aulis

Euripides’ Bacchae

Euripides’ Cyclops

[Euripides’] Rhesos

Aristophanes’ Acharnians

Aristophanes’ Knights

Aristophanes’ Wasps

Aristophanes’ Peace

Aristophanes’ Clouds

Aristophanes’ Birds

Aristophanes’ Lysistrate

Aristophanes’ Women at the Thesmophoria

Aristophanes’ Frogs

Aristophanes’ Assembly-Women

Aristophanes’ Wealth

Menander’s The Grouch

Menander’s Samian Woman

A Note on Meter

Glossary of Names and Terms


Further Reading


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