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The Persians / Prometheus Bound / Seven Against Thebes / The Suppliants Bound'But what mortal man can escapeThe guileful deception of a god?'Aeschylus, often known as the father of tragedy, was the first to raise the drama of classical Athens to a high art. The Persians, his earliest surviving play, is unique in its depiction of contemporary events - the Battle of Salamis - rather than heroic myth. Seven Against Thebes is the story of two brothers paying a terrible price for their claim to the throne of their city, and The Suppliants, the oldest text that attests to the existence of the word 'democracy', presents the tale of the Danaids' plea for protection from forced marriage. Prometheus Bound, which may be a later work by Aeschylus' son, portrays the suffering of the Titan Prometheus at the hands of Zeus after he was caught giving fire to mankind.Alan Sommerstein's translation communicates the tragic grandeur of the original text, and his introduction places the plays in historical and dramatic context, explaining the developments of Greek theatre in Aeschylus' time. This edition also includes suggested further reading, maps, a chronology and the surviving fragments of ten other plays.Translated with an introduction by ALAN SOMMERSTEIN
Aeschylus (525-456 BC) is said to have written more than ninety plays, only seven of which have survived. Alan H. Sommerstein is a professor of Greek at the University of Nottingham.