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History Oedipus & The Persians Essay

1096 words - 5 pages

Greek drama began as a religious festival called the Dionysia, which evidently was to honour the god Dionysus. It is believed that drama evolved in Athens – where a body of people would sing and dance in the honour of Dionysus, and sometimes an animal was sacrificed as to ask for fertile crops and agricultural land – To honour the God Dionysus. This body of people became known as the chorus in plays hereafter.
Late 6th Century BC, a Greek poet by the name of Thespis suggested adding person to interact with the chorus, this is the addition of the protagonist or main character and thus drama was born.
Drama most important aspect implicit in Greek drama was religion, the whole concept of ...view middle of the document...

Darius particularly picks on Xerxes for his decision to build a bridge over the Hellespont, which Darius says simply angered the Gods and thus brought about Persian defeat. Xerxes finally arrives home dressed in nothing but rags.
The Persians was ultimately written to embarrass and mock the Persians defeat, this play would have been a celebratory of Greek victory against the Persians in the war. Although The Persians was based on true events, the play is fictional and reveals to us how the Greeks interpreted Xerxes and the Persians as a whole. Many of the details are greatly exaggerated and the Greeks emphasize Xerxes use of building a bridge over the Hellespont as a sign of defiance to the Gods; and they use Darius as a character to fault Xerxes for angering the Gods, or perhaps in particular Poseidon – God of the Sea, as Salamis was a battle fought on the water. Xerxes’ nemesis was ultimately his defeat at Salamis and disapproval from Atossa and the ghost of Darius upon his return to Susa.
The Greeks believed that they had the God’s favour during the war, which they believe, inevitably helped them win. Aeschylus is very critical of Xerxes in the play “Xerxes, ill-fated, led the war”
The Greeks were strong believers in prophets and gods as were all cultures back in ancient times. Oedipus the King is a story of fate, prophecy and truth, all of which can be directly linked back to the Gods.
In the play Oedipus the King by Sophocles, Thebes is cursed and so King Oedipus sends Creon to the oracle of Apollo at Delphi to obtain advice. When Creon returns he reveals that the only way for the curse to be lifted is if the murderer of the former King Laius is found and prosecuted. At this point in the play the chorus would pray to the Gods and beg for help in lifting the curse. When Oedipus is questioning citizens he is informed by an old blind prophet that it was he who murdered Laius. Jocasta, Oedipus’ wife tries to ease Oedipus by telling him that she and former King Laius had a son, and it was prophesised that he would murder his father and sleep with his biological...

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