The Gods And Mortals In Greek Tragedy English Literature Essay

Aphrodite starts the play with her offer to eliminate Hippolytus, Which young man who makes war on me will be killed, Euripides, Hippolytus, range 42 for his rejection and spurn of her. She makes good on that assurance by her manipulation of the heroes she mentions in this same passing; Theseus, Phaedra and Hippolytus himself.

The extract shows further significant in discovering the relationship between the gods and mortals in Greek tragedy. The use of speeches by Aphrodite at the starting of the play and Artemis at the final, work in conveying the main theme of the play, which Buxton neatly represents as discovering the issue of two 'antithetical perceptions of sexuality' (Textual Options 1, p82). This divine and 'eternal rivalry' (Textual Resources 1, p82) of Aphrodite and Artemis is illustrated by the action of the human individuals of Phaedra and Hippolytus, even if Phaedra's thoughts are a manipulation of the gods. Euripides has chosen to write a version of the myth, which is definitively underlined by the god's connections.

The play without this early extract may experienced the same story but Euripides wouldn't normally have made his point as clear with regards to the individual tragedy that unfolds. Aphrodite and Artemis stand as polar opposites on how to live life so even their use as 'literary symbols' (Block 1, p27) rather than as key players within the myth serves to point out the thrust and pull conflict within the category of Theseus.

The remove specifically utilises phrases which connote precisely how powerful gods in Greek tragedy were. That Theseus can ask Poseidon when he needs him to 'have his prayer fulfilled' (Euripides, Hippolytus, brand 48) is proof just how included the gods were in Greek life whether in the context of the myth itself or in the context of the audience in fifth century Athens at the festivity of Dionysus. Euripides use of words such as 'warfare', 'killed', 'fatality', 'honour' and 'punished' (Euripides, Hippolytus, lines 41-51) all illustrate the main themes or templates of conflict, fatality and undoubtedly tragedy within the play.

When Aphrodite says the audience 'I will uncover the affair to Theseus; it shall not stay in the deep. ' (Euripides, Hippolytus, Line 41), it sets up her motives for the main personas and foreshadows the tragic happenings the audience have yet to see. What Euripides doesn't do at this point is give away the facts of how she completes her quest. She doesn't in reality tell Theseus straight as she remarks she'll do. It is merely after the fatality of Hippolytus close to the end of the play that Theseus realizes about the 'intended' affair, which means this is a nice twist for the audience and even if indeed they knew the misconception well it would have toyed with their prospects of the storyline.

The extract from Euripides is significant in that it explains to the audience the essential plotline of the entire play in a very concise way without uncovering how the personas happen to be their final areas or deaths.

Part 2. How exactly does the characterisation of Phaedra change between different editions of the Hippolytus myth? Answer in only 1500 words with reference to sources you have fulfilled in stop 1.

Euripides Hippolytus was first performed in Athens in 428 BCE. It is a good example of a books source profiling the character of Phaedra, one of the key players in the Hippolytus misconception, which would have been familiar to an audience at that time. The version of the misconception Euripides chooses to share with paints a very pitiful picture of Phaedra, as she actually is very much the victim even though she is not the one character to perish. Aphrodite's opening speech, 'my scheming triggered an awful longing to seize her heart and soul' (Euripides, Hippolytus, series 28), informs the audience that Phaedra is someone who is perhaps but only plaything of the gods and a pawn in the on-going rivalry of Artemis and Aphrodite.

When the audience first meet Phaedra in the play she is in a state of mental torment over her love on her behalf stepson Hippolytus. She realises the passion she feels for him is incorrect and therefore when she first shows up in the play she actually is very unstable in her requests to her nurse of her reasoning for the coffee lover. She asks her nurse to help her take her net off her wild hair then she soon wishes it back on, 'This net is heavy that keeps my hair. Remove it, let my hair fall over my shoulders. ' (Euripides, Hippolytus, brand 200) 'Nurse dear, cover my head once again;' (Euripides, Hippolytus, range 241). Phaedra changes her brain in several concerns over a sort space of time in various concerns which Euripides has chosen to show her volatile state of mind regarding her situation, which at this point in the play she hasn't divulged to her nurse yet. Euripides heightens Phaedra's anguished condition further by having the chorus ask 'Is she away of her mind or aiming to kill herself?' (Euripides, Hippolytus, collection 274).

Euripides leaves the reader in without doubt what Hippolytus feels for Phaedra and his thoughts and opinions of her female persona. When he realizes about her love for him he's appalled and aligns Phaedra, 'this poisonous creature' (Euripides, Hippolytus, collection 630), with all women whom he feels are a 'dangerous pest' (Euripides, Hippolytus, brand 624) and who should only be allowed to keep carefully the company of 'dumb and savage beasts' (Euripides, Hippolytus, line 642).

The nurse in the play is on Phaedra's aspect and has affections on her behalf but it is her actions by sharing with Hippolytus of her love, which causes Phaedra's eventual demise. Phaedra had been endeavoring to conceal her passions, as she knew how wrong it was to try any seduction of her husband's kid. She decides to get rid of herself to conserve losing her hubby and to exact revenge from beyond the grave in falsely naming Hippolytus as her violator in the letter to Theseus. So here Euripides shows her persona to be noble yet vengeful in the same take action.

Euripides utilises the chorus well when the nurse, via the details of a notice shows Phaedra's love for Hippolytus. They ask Phaedra questions and show her sympathy, which in turn allows the reader or audience to sympathise with her plight. 'What now? Exactly what will you do? Your position is hopeless!' (Euripides, Hippolytus, line 594). Exactly like Aphrodite at the start, the chorus throughout remind the audience of Phaedra's eventual fatality. Euripides constructions his play cleverly in that it is not 'why' happenings happen that varieties the intrigue but it is 'how' the situations unfold. He retains the audience enthusiastic about his version of the myth by welcoming those to analyse the psyche of Phaedra and just how she reacts to those around her.

Similarly Ovid's notice 'Phaedra to Hippolytus' from his Heroides collection is a retelling of the Hippolytus myth (Textual Options 1, pp10-14). Ovid handles one identity in this letter however the reader is offered various similarities with Euripides version. The madness evident in Euripides, Phaedra is also retold here, 'I am embroiled like the mad screaming disciples of Bacchus who are driven by their god's frenzy' (Textual Sources 1, p11, line 61). In the same way Ovid recounts the gods involvement in Phaedra's passion for Hippolytus, ' I understand I have already been possessed by love' (Textual Options 1, p11, collection 70). In this admiration Phaedra in Ovid's notice is almost a reimagining of Euripides version of her. She is tormented and conflicted in what to do about her feelings and understands it is incorrect in both versions, 'This heavy insert does not relax well on my heart and soul' (Textual Options 1, p10, brand 35) and 'As for the work and the condition, I realized they brought disgrace on me' (Euripides, Hippolytus, series 404).

However, Ovid decides to point out certain areas of the myth diversely than Euripides. Ovid's one essential difference for the reason that she actually will try to make Hippolytus love her, 'I offer you a purity long preserved; let us both be similar in our guilt. ' (Textual Resources 1, p10, collection 39). This makes the characterisation of Phaedra in Ovid's notice much more forward and outgoing than the Euripides figure. Nowhere in Hippolytus does the audience see her try to come clean about her feelings. She tries her very best to cover them and realises when that isn't going to work any longer that she'll kill herself to free her husbands emotions 'I must perish at once; there is absolutely no other cure for this anguish I feel' (Euripides, Hippolytus, collection 599). Ovid's Phaedra contrasts this whimpering version of her when you are more established to gain her Hippolytus and fulfil their love, 'I was driven - if love can determine anything - to combat long alternatively than be conquered, but I confess I am get over' (Textual Sources 1, p13, line 185). She even utilizes various arguments to convince him they should be along by reminding Hippolytus that Theseus killed his Amazonian mom and Phaedra's brother, 'We have both been deeply hurt by Theseus' (Textual Sources 1, p12, range 140). As the notice continues on Phaedra's unbalanced state of mind becomes a lot more rational just as her mind she clears the road to allow them to be collectively. Euripides Phaedra is lost at the beginning of the play and keeps this way until her fatality.

In the wall painting (early first century CE), bought at the House of Jason in Pompeii (Visual sources, plate 1. 4), Phaedra is seen with her nurse by her area. The first contrast of take note of about Phaedra here is her sitting position, which implies preoccupation or distress (Block1, p50), similar to her past incarnations in Ovid and Euripides. The picture shows the nurse holding a writing tablet, so this picture illustrates a distressed Phaedra about to write her love letter to Hippolytus in Ovid's version or her damning notice to Theseus about Hippolytus in Euripides version. The image of the letter is predominant in many Roman images of this myth such as those observed in vases and paintings of residences (Visual Sources, plates 1. 4, 1. 7, 1. 9, 1. 10).

The context, that your Romans used this myth is interesting as it gives another sizing to the character of Phaedra. The House of Jason image (Aesthetic Sources, plate 1. 4) has a servant in the background and gives the looks of Phaedra caring for her household but in simple fact this is juxtaposed with her writing the letter, which will destroy her household. This image was put near images of Medea and Helen of Troy which suggest a theme of women and their activities (Stop 1, 50), assessing the images more closely offers weight to Buxton's 'underside' of myth where 'heroic love can wreck heroic homes' (Stop 1, p51). Compare this to Euripides words from Hippolytus where he says 'But a sit is they remain at home and come up with wicked plans in their wicked hearts, while their servants take them to the exterior world' (Euripides, Hippolytus, range 649). This conveys the conspiratorial factor of the myth and of Phaedra's character as a devious girl. This aspect of Phaedra is emphasised as a polar other concerning how Roman women were expected to behave in the house and in their world. These images may have then been put in such dominant home positions, as a alert for women to stop and think about the consequences with their actions (Block 1, p52).

Another image demonstrating Phaedra at an identical moment is seen in the red floor mosaic at Antioch from mid-second century CE (Aesthetic Sources, plate 1. 5). The keeping the three personas in this image is comparable to the victim part of Phaedra's persona as shown in Hippolytus. Phaedra is positioned between a statue of Aphrodite and her nurse in a cause facing from everyone else, almost apologetically, like she isn't in charge of her actions, which parallels with earlier versions of her figure from both Euripides and Ovid. However this version of Phaedra contrasts more with the scheming nature of her identity as in screen inside your home of Jason image (Visual Sources, plate 1. 4). Both images depict exact moments of myth that are of your decisive nature, building up their purpose in Roman homes. Morally these images become a reminder to women the way they should carry out themselves or also to be mindful of the gods. These images were placed strategically in homes in Roman Italy and not just for cosmetic reasons.

From the sources chosen here it is evident that different variations of Phaedra's character are picked out from the myth to serve a purpose either to an audience, a reader or in the house. This illustrates how myth was used in several ways at different things in history. The many characterisations of Phaedra can be judged under differing circumstances through the assorted cultural contexts.

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