Top positive review
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on 26 April 2014
This Oxford World’s Classics (published 2008) edition of Aeschylus’ Oresteia contains the three plays – Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers and Eumenides – along with copious notes and information provided by the translator Christopher Collard.
There are over 70 pages of introductory material, including analyses of:
1. Aeschylus and the Oresteia
2. A view of the Oresteia
2.1 The dramatic ideas and their sources
2.2 The dramatic design and the characters
2.3 Issues and meanings
2.4 The plays in Aeschylus’ theatre
3. Dramatic form and language in Aeschylus
3.1 Dramatic form in general
3.2 Speech and spoken dialogue
3.3 Choral song and lyric dialogue
3.4 Language and imagery
4. Aeschylus now: ‘reception’ and public response
There are also sections on a summary of the stage-action in the trilogy of plays, notes on the text and translations, explanatory notes, bibliography and further reading, a chronology of Aeschylus’ life and times, family trees of the principal characters of the Oresteia and a map showing Greece and the Aegean Sea.
Following the texts of the plays, there are copious explanatory notes on the texts (over 100 pages of notes).
Apart from the very readable translations of the texts, the author has provided a wonderfully encompassing amount of information to make the reader’s experience of the Oresteia both worthwhile and entertaining, as well as eminently accessible. This edition is highly recommended.