By Euripides

This quantity of 3 of Euripides' so much celebrated performs bargains swish, within your budget, metrical translations that show the wide variety of results of the playwright's verse, from the idiomatic speech of its discussion to the excessive formality of its choral odes.

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Extra resources for Alcestis, Medea, Hippolytus

Sample text

7 7. King Eurystheus of Tiryns is a cousin of the hero Heracles and the master for whom Heracles must perform his Twelve Labors. While there is no canonical version of the labors’ motivation, Alcestis makes no reference to Heracles needing to atone for the murders of his family, so it likely engages the version that had Heracles serving Eurystheus because Zeus boasted just SvarleinEuripies-00Bk Page 7 Tuesday, July 17, 2007 12:04 PM [68–88] ALCESTIS 7 Admetus’ house will make this guest feel welcome, and he’ll take back Admetus’ wife by force.

I recently received a sample packet of skin lotion with printed instructions that can pass as ordinary prose: “After cleansing and toning, smooth evenly over face. ” The second sentence is a perfect iambic pentameter. The iambic pentameter is the meter I have used wherever Euripides uses iambic trimeter. As the name suggests, it is a line made of five iambs: da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM. Many variations are traditionally allowed, and I have treated it as essentially a line with five beats.

David Kovacs read this work with great care and offered insightful suggestions, which have improved the translations in many places. I thank Robin Mitchell-Boyask for his comments on the translation, which led to further improvements, and for contributing the very useful Introduction and footnotes. My husband, John Svarlien, was always willing to lend me his ear for poetry and his good judgment when I was considering different versions of a line or passage. I am grateful to Georgetown College, especially the library, for institutional support.

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