Greek Playwrites

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Greek Playwrites

Aristophanes was born at about 446 BC into a wealthy family. He was a Greek comic writer and poet. His works were preformed at festivals and most placed in competition. Out of the fourty plays he wrote, unfortunately, only eleven survive today. These include The Archarnians, The Knights (which won first place), and The Wasps (which ridiculed the courts of justice). Most of Aristophanes' plays were "political satires highlighting the troubles in Athens during that period"(AncientGreece). Around the time he wrote his last play, Athens had been defeated in war and was recently broken apart. Aristophanes died around 388 BC and left two, now lost, plays behind.


Euripides was born on the day of the Battle of Salamis, in Athens, Greece. He increased the importance of tragic plays and influenced the creation of Greek New Comedy (his tragidies seemed more comedic than tragic). He added intrigue to Greek plays and created the love-drama (Helen is critically thought of as a comedy). He had a dislike for women, even though they played major roles in his plays, alongside mythological elements. In his plays, he showed the gods as having a lower sense of morals than that of a virtuous, mortal man. Out of his over ninety plays, only nineteen of them have survived to the present day. Euripides was a ledgend, as shown by the explanations for his death; "He was said to have been killed by hunting dogs, either accidently let loose on him or delibratly set on him by enemies or rivals, or torn apart by women" (Bacchae).

Aeschylus was the first of Greek's great tragic dramatist. He wrote about 90 plays in his life time. Sadly, only seven have survived to today. Aeschylus fought successfully against the Persians at least twice, possibly three times. He died in 456 BC in Gela, Italy. One of his important contributions to society includes his influence on Greek theatre. According to Aeschylus, "It was a major step for drama when Aeschylus introduced the second actor". With the addition of the second actor, the role of the chorus was reduced to jobs such as setting the mood for the action of the play. The introduction of the second actor allowed for more dramatic action and dialogue.


Sources"Aeschylus." Aeschylus. University Press Inc., n.d. Web. 07 Oct. 2014."Aeschylus and His Tragedies." Aeschylus and His Tragedies. N.p., 2002. Web. 09 Oct. 2014."Aristophanes." Aristophanes. University Press Inc., 2003. Web. 07 Oct. 2014. ( ) "Aristophanes." 2014. The Famous People website. Oct 9 2014, 12:00"Euripides Biography." A'E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014. (, N. S. "Learn About the Third of the Great Tragedians:Euripides An Athenian Playwright Who Wrote Greek Tragedy." Ancient History. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014. . "The Different Types of Greek Drama and Their Importance." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014

Greek Playwrights



Aristophanes, Euripides, and Aeschylus were born around the classical period in Ancient Greece and were the playwrights who revolutionized the theater. They invented and refined the drama we know and enjoy today. These three playwrights impacted literature as a whole, and dealt with themes that are still common in the present day. These men not only wrote their plays to entertain, but to teach morals, lessons, and how to view the world. They merged theater with the enviroment around them; "the Ancient Greeks took their entertainment very seriously and used drama as a way of investigating the world they lived in"(PBS). Although many of their plays were lost in time, the world of theatre and literature will not soon forget the contributions these men made to the arts.

c.525 BC - Aeschylus bornc.480 BC - Euripides bornc.456 BC - Aeshylus diesc.446 BC - Aristophanes bornc.406 BC - Euripides diesc.388 BC - Aristophanes dies

By Miriam Arzoumanian,Zoë SchneiderJack Beckleyand Katelyn Heselton


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