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Cleaenetus

(50 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Κλεαίνετος; Kleaínetos). Tragedian (TrGF I 84), won the 3rd place at the Lenaeans in 363 BC; mocked by  Alexis as not exacting (Fr. 268 PCG), by  Philodemus (84 T 3 TrGF I) as a worse poet than Euripides. ‘Hypsipyle’ is attested as a title. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Theodorides

(35 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Θεοδωρίδης; TheodōrÍdēs). Greek tragedian (TrGF I 78 A), took second place at the Athenian Lenaea in 363 BC with a Medea and a Phaethon (DID A 2b, 94). Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Morsimus

(50 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Μόρσιμος; Mόrsimos). Son of Philocles, great-nephew of Aeschylus [1] (TrGF I 12 T 3), middle of the 5th cent. BC, oculist (TrGF I 29 T 2) and tragedian, the latter according to Aristophanes (Equ. 401, Pax 802, Ran. 151) of particularly poor quality. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Theatre

(2,540 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) [German version] A.Late Antiquity/ Middle Ages (CT) There is, to be sure, evidence for the existence of sporadic performances of Greek tragedies up into 4th cent. AD and plays by Plautus and Terence continued to be performed as late as the 3rd/4th. cents., but on the whole, tragedies and comedies had largely disappeared from the theatre programme of the Roman Imperial Age. The stage of that age, however, was not devoid of dramatic, sub-literary genres [5]. They included mimes, pantomimes and the fabulae cantatae, i.e. tragic isolated scenes perfor…

Polyphrasmon

(60 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Πολυφράσμων/ Polyphrásmōn). Son of Phrynichus [1], tragedian, first victory between 482 and 471 (DID A 3a, 13), successful at the Dionysia in 471  (DID A 1, 22). In 467 he is recorded as third to Aeschylus [1], who won with his Theban trilogy, and Pratinas' son Aristias [2] with his trilogy Lykourgeia (TrGF I 7). Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Stichomythia

(484 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (στιχομυθία/ stichomythía). A form of dialogue in ancient drama in which two persons - or, more rarely, three -  speak in regular turns. It was first documented as a technical term in Poll. 4,113, but a description of the dramatic technique of 'dialogue intensification' [6] appears as early as in Aeschylos [1] (Eum. 585 f.). The origins of stichomythia are unknown (initiation rites: [8. 201], folk customs: [2. 95-106]). Under the general heading of the technique of stichomythia, sc…

Rhesis

(452 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (ἡ ῥῆσις/ hē rhêsis), generally 'speech' (Hom. Od. 21,291). As early as the 5th cent. BC, rhesis was a technical term for a speech in a play, especially in a tragedy (for the concept cf. Aristoph. Ach. 416, Nub. 1371, Vesp. 580, Ran. 151; Aristot. Poet. 1454a 31, 1456a 31). The length of a rhesis varies from c. 7 to over 100 verses (Eur. Ion 1122-1228, Phoen. 1090-1199, Bacch. 1043-1152). The most important function of rhḗseis in the context of the storyline is to supply information. The requisite details which are important for the storyline are frequen…

Phanostratus

(27 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Φανόστρατος; Phanóstratos) of Halicarnassus. Tragedian, probably successful at the Attic Lenaea in 306 BC. TrGF I 94 = DID B7. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Neophron

(158 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Νεόφρων; Neóphrōn) of Sicyon. Tragedian, 2nd half of 5th cent. BC; according to the Suda (TrGF I 15 T 1) the author of 120 plays, and the first to depict tutors and the torture of slaves on the stage. According to the hypothesis of Euripides' [1] ‘Medea arising from the Peripatetic tradition, the Euripidean drama is said to have derived from N. The 24 surviving verses show clear concordances with Euripides (esp. Medea's monologue in N. fragment 2, cf. Eur. Med. 1021ff., 1236ff.); …

Prologue

(1,052 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
(ὁ πρόλογος/ ho prólogos, Lat. prologus, prologium). [German version] A. Concept In his list of the individual elements (μέρη/ mérē) of tragedy in the 'Poetics', Aristotle defines the prologue as a complete section of a tragedy preceding the chorus' párodos (Aristot. Poet. 13,1452b 22 f.) [9. 471 f.]. However, the term prólogos was already in use in the technical sense before Aristotle: in 'The Frogs', Aristophanes subtitles the prologue the 'first part of a tragedy' (Aristoph. Ran. 1120: τὸ πρῶτον τῆς τραγῳδίας μέρος/ tò prôton tês tragōidías méros), which, however, can have ref…

Drama

(450 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] Derived from the verb δρᾶν ( drân), predominantly attested in Attic, the noun δρᾶμα ( drâma; ‘action’, ‘deed’ in a general sense) is the antonym of ‘what is experienced’ (πάθος/ páthos) (Aesch. Ag. 533); it can also mean ‘duty’, ‘task’ (Pl. Tht. 150a, Resp. 451c ). For the most part, though, drama is a technical term meaning ‘theatrical play’ (tragedy, comedy, satyr play) in the context of its performance (Aristoph. Ran. 920); it appears in the plural form in the title of Aristophanes' play Δράματα ἢ Νίοβος ( Drā́mata ē Níobos; fr. 289-298 PCG III2; fr. 299-304 PCG III2), in T…

Euphantus

(61 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] of Olynthus (TrGF 1, 118; FGrH 74), end of the 4th, beginning of the 3rd cent. BC; according to Diog. Laert. 2,110 teacher of  Antigonus [2] Gonatas, to whom he dedicated a work ‘On the Rule of Kings’ (Περὶ βασιλείας; Perì basileías). Writer of a history of the Diadochi period and of several successful tragedies. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Greek tragedy

(3,204 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) [German version] A. Antiquity and Middle Ages (CT) The following article is only concerned with the performance of plays by the three main Greek tragedians and the various tendencies of their productions in modern times. It is not possible in this context to deal with adaptations, new arrangements or reworkings, nor with the reception of Greek tragedy as a whole in the history of European cultural and intellectual history. The seminal year marking a decisive change in the practice of performing dramatic plays in Athens was 386 BC, bec…

Euripides

(4,470 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
(Εὐριπίδης / Euripídēs) [German version] [1] Tragedian The Attic Tragedian. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) [German version] A. Biography The most important evidence comes from the vita passed down to us in several MSS, the  Marmor Parium, the  Suda, Gell. NA 15,20 and the vita by  Satyrus. Only a few details of E.'s life can be considered certain: born between 485 and 480 BC on Salamis, son of a Mnesarchus or Mnesarchides. He took part in the Great Dionysia for the first time in 455, achieving his first victory in 441. During his lifet…

Epirrhematic

(88 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] Derived from tó epírrhēma (τό ἐπίρρημα, ‘that which is said afterwards’), i.e. the speech following a lyric part. The succession of lyrical and spoken (or rather recited) parts is referred to as an epirrhematic composition. Aeschylus frequently used this form in semi-lyrical  amoibaia. In the Old Comedy, epirrhematic composition can be found in the  parabasis and in the epirrhematic agon. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) Bibliography Th. Gelzer, Der epirrhematische Agon bei Aristophanes, 1960 B. Zimmermann, Unt. zur Form und dramatischen Technik der Ar…

Pythangelus

(21 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Πυθάγγελος; Pythángelos). Tragedian of the 5th cent. BC, mentioned only in Aristoph. Ran. 87. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Sinis

(85 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] (Greek Σίνις/Sínis, robber). One of the scoundrels who are killed by Theseus in their own vicious manner ( e.g. Bacchyl. 18,19-22): S., a son of Poseidon with the cognomen Pityokámptēs ('spruce bender'), is a brigand on the Corinthian Isthmus who ties the arms and legs of travellers to spruce trees that he bent down before. When he lets the trees shoot up, the victims are torn apart. He dies in the same fashion following the principle of Talion Law. Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)

Messenger scenes

(478 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
[German version] Longer rhesis in drama, in which other characters or the chorus are informed, either behind or off scene, of events that have taken place before or during the dramatic action and that could not represented on stage either because of the means or the conventions of Attic drama. These reports, furnished with all available rhetorical means, are usually presented by a main or a supporting figure (Eur. Heraclid. 389ff; Soph. El. 680ff.), but often by a nameless messenger specifically introduced for this purpose (ἄγγελοι/ ángeloi or ἔξαγγελοι/ éxangeloi, if the message co…

Mnesilochus

(103 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
(Μνησίλοχος/ Mnēsílochos). [German version] [1] see Mnasilochus See Mnasilochus Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) [German version] [2] Father-in-law of Euripides Father-in-law of Euripides [1], of the deme of Phlya. In our sources, the daughter's name varies between Choerile and Melito. In the hypothesis to Aristophanes' ‘Thesmophoriazousai the kēdēstḗs (close relative) of Eupolis is incorrectly identified with M. (also in manuscript R). Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg) Bibliography U. v. Wilamowitz-Moellendorff, Euripides, Herakles I 1895, 7. [German version] [3] Secon…

Hypothesis

(474 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg)
(ὑπόθεσις; hypóthesis). Introduction, summary. [German version] A. History of literature Three types can be distinguished in tragedy: 1. The hypothéseis of  Aristophanes [4] of Byzantium found in the Peripatetic tradition ( Dicaearchus fr. 78 Wehrli); they contain a brief summary, point to the treatment of the same material by another tragedian, name the setting, the identity of the chorus and the speaker of the prologue and give further information on the play's performance (dating, title of the author's other p…
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