Aeschylus & Sophocles: Their Work and Influence

Aeschylus & Sophocles: Their Work and Influence

Aeschylus & Sophocles: Their Work and Influence

Aeschylus & Sophocles: Their Work and Influence

Excerpt

As Homer knew, there were dancing places in prehistoric Greece. Odysseus marvelled at the twinkling feet of the Phaeacian dancers while a minstrel sang of Ares and of Aphrodite. Centuries before Aeschylus was born, in this combination of a ballad with a dance, there was a germ of drama. Homer Iliad was a new creation, made by his genius out of old material. 2 The tales of Troy, founded on truth, but enriched already first by singers, then by reciters, came to him with a tradition of a simple, but flexible narrative technique. He so refashioned the material that the whole siege became a background for one tragic theme, the Wrath of Achilles, its inception from King Agamemnon's insult, its hardening into perverse obsession, when Achilles in his turn rejected Agamemnon's offer of amends, its transformation to a passionate consuming lust for vengeance when Patroclus had been killed, and the final . . .
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