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The Poetry of Greek Tragedy by Richmond Lattimore


The Poetry of Greek Tragedy by Richmond Lattimore

Is Sophocles the poet more important than Sophocles the moralist, Sophocles the student of character, or Sophocles the storyteller? In this acclaimed work, eminent classicist Richmond Lattimore examines the complex and varied ways in which Greek poetry contributes to Greek drama. While acknowledging the difficulty of separating poetry-especially in translation-from other aspects of language, Lattimore offers keen insight into plays by Aeschylus (The Suppliant Maidens, The Persians, The Seven against Thebes, Prometheus Bound), Sophocles (Ajax, Oedipus Tyrannus), and Euripides (Medea, Helen, The Bacchae).


Lattimore's treatment is skillfully adapted to the needs of a partly non-classical audience, and will suit a wide reading public... [His] thoughts on the plays are illuminating, and all are stated with a freshness and vigor which make a readable and stimulating book. * Classical Review * This is close, illuminating, deliberately modest criticism that lights up passage after passage of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides. * Christian Science Monitor * Despite the intervening 45 years these essays have something refreshing to offer-that is, an opportunity to read what an accomplished poet makes of Greek tragedies as poetry. -- James Robson * Journal of Classics Teaching *

About the Author

Richmond Lattimore (1906-1984) was a professor of Greek at Bryn Mawr College and considered one of the twentieth century's leading translators of Greek classical literature. His many works of editing and translation include The Complete Greek Tragedies, The Odyssey of Homer, and Greek Lyrics.

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Book Info

Publication date

15th January 2003


Richmond Lattimore

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Johns Hopkins University Press


160 pages


Literary studies: poetry & poets
Literary studies: classical, early & medieval
Literary studies: plays & playwrights



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