The 'Seven against Thebes' of Aeschylus

The 'Seven against Thebes' of Aeschylus

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The 'Seven against Thebes' of Aeschylus

The 'Seven against Thebes' of Aeschylus

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Excerpt

The play here edited presents, with other kinds of interest common to Aeschylus' works in general, the problem of a wide and most unusual divergence between the judgment of antiquity and the judgment of modern times. It was profoundly admired by the Athenian spectators of the great dramatic age, and frequently cited by readers throughout the times of Graeco- Roman civilization. In modern times even the magnificence of the verse and the splendour of detached pieces have not been thought sufficient to support so favourable a view, when balanced against the supposed want of any merit properly called dramatic. Whether this disagreement may be explained or perhaps removed is the question which it will be our first business to consider.

I have but a few words to say by way of preface to (1) the text, (2) the explanation, (3) the translation.

For the critical foundation I am indebted almost entirely to the text and apparatus of Dr Wecklein.

The Introduction and explanatory notes are in the main the product of independent work. The collection of 'uncertain conjectures', appended by Dr Wecklein to his text, extends over nearly 300 pages, of which nearly 50 are filled with those on this single play. This appalling catalogue, if it proves, as it . . .

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