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Clarendon Press, 1995 - Drama - 198 pages
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This edition and commentary provides an invaluable introduction to one of Euripides' less well-known plays, and describes the enormousvalue of the text for our understanding of Athenian drama, religion,and society. Heraclidae is one of Euripides' `alphabetical' plays, preserved exclusively ina Laurentian manuscript, and therefore not selected in antiquity. Neither in modern times, despite the excellent commentaries of Elmsley (1821) and Pearson (1907), and powerful articles by Wilamwitz, has the play been given the prominence it deserves. This edition interprets the play in a widecultural setting, considering unorthodox aspects of the structure of the drama, but placing particular emphasis on the cults and myths of Heracles in Attica, on his apotheosis and marriage, on his association with the young, and most of all on the two most striking rituals in the play: the voluntaryself-sacrifice of the daughter of Heracles, and the conversion of Eurystheus from an enemy of Athens to a hero whose dead body will protect the city-state. The text is James Diggle's (Oxford Classical Texts 1984)

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Euripides (c. 480-406 BCE) was the last of the three great tragedians of classical Athens. John Wilkins is at University of Exeter.

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