About Euripides the anthropologist, and how he reads the troubled thoughts of…

Apollonius of Rhodes and Homeric Anger

2020.07.24 | By Stan Burgess §0. There have been many recent studies of various aspects of anger in Greek culture, from Homer through the Hellenistic period, and beyond. However few have examined the role anger plays in the Argonautica. There right away a striking curiosity concerning anger stands out. Apollonius of Rhodes avoids the most common term of his day for anger, ὀργή. Through the Classical period and into the… Read more

Black Bile, Yellow Bile: An Essay on Warrior Dysfunctionality and the Prehistory of Greek Medicine

2020.05.28 | By Roger D. Woodard Bellerophon falling from Pegaus (anonymous, ca. 1575–1599). Rijksmuseum BK-NM-12026. Image via the Rijksmuseum.   §1. In Problemata physica 30, a work attributed to Aristotle, though typically judged to be a Peripatetic compilation,[1] the composer(s) (to whom I will refer in what follows as “Aristotle” or “the author”) addresses the mental state of dysfunctional warriors. These remarks form a part of the discussion about those… Read more

Seven Greek tragedies, seven simple overviews

2018.12.27 | By Gregory Nagy I challenge myself here to write up seven elementary “plot outlines”—I call them overviews—for seven Greek tragedies: (1) Agamemnon and (2) Libation-Bearers and (3) Eumenides, by Aeschylus; (4) Oedipus at Colonus and (5) Oedipus Tyrannus, by Sophocles; (6) Hippolytus and (7) Bacchae (or Bacchic Women), by Euripides. In my overviews, I expect of the reader no previous knowledge of these seven tragedies. Mask of Dionysus,… Read more

Thoughts about heroes, athletes, poetry

2018.08.10 | By Gregory Nagy §0. The picture on the cover makes me think about heroes, athletes, and poetry. What we see is an Amazon, riding on horseback, engaged in mortal combat with a male adversary. As I have shown in previous postings about Amazons, especially in my comments on Antiope, queen of the Amazons, in Classical Inquiries 2017.10.18, these female warriors were considered to be not only heroes but… Read more

More on the love story of Phaedra and Hippolytus: comparing the references in Pausanias and Euripides

2018.08.03 | By Gregory Nagy In the posting for 2018.06.21, I highlighted a painterly vision in the narrative of Pausanias about the erotic passion felt by Phaedra for Hippolytus. In that vision, Phaedra is viewing Hippolytus exercising naked. And the agent of the vision is the goddess Aphrodite. In the present posting, for 2018.08.03, I compare another painterly vision—this time, in the poetry of Euripides. In this vision, Phaedra is… Read more

A sampling of comments on the Herakles of Euripides

2018.04.20 | By Gregory Nagy The comments in this posting about the Herakles of Euripides derive from a set of compressed notes I had started writing in 1999. These notes were meant as a companion to the Herakles as translated by Robert Potter—his translations of Euripides first appeared in two volumes, 1781 and 1783—and as adapted by Casey Dué and Mary Ebbott in 1999. The madness of Hēraklēs. Mosaic (3rd–4th… Read more

Achilles and the Apobates Race in Euripides’ Iphigeneia in Aulis

2018.03.26 | By Thomas Scanlon An exploration of the figure of Achilles in Euripides’ Iphigeneia in Aulis in relation to its historical context, particularly the Peloponnesian War. The Chorus §1. In the parodos of Euripides’ Iphigeneia in Aulis the chorus of Chalcian women describe Achilles among a list of Greek heroes at Aulis waiting to set sail for Troy (206–230). Achilles appears in this relatively long passage as running in… Read more

God-Hero Antagonism in the Hippolytus of Euripides

2015.02.14 | By Gregory Nagy §1. In Hour 20 of The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours (H24H), I wrote about the hero as a mirror of men’s and women’s experiences in the Hippolytus of Euripides with a focus on the key word telos, ‘end, ending, final moment; goal, completion, fulfillment; coming full circle, rounding out; successfully passing through an ordeal; initiation; ritual, rite’. “Phèdre” (1880). Alexandre Cabanel (French, 1823–1889).… Read more

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