Greek Tragedies

In: English and Literature

Submitted By blaine
Words 2290
Pages 10
Throughout all of history people have been writing about the temptations of mankind and their rise to glory and honour, which can ultimately lead to their demise. Through the three plays Agamemnon by Aeschylus, Oedipus the King by Sophocles and Hippolytus by Euripides, there are three prevalent themes. These are the role of the gods, the difference between good and evil and human responsibilities. All three of these tragedies reveal the importance of the role the gods play to mankind. The gods have control over mankind and sometimes use them as pawns to achieve their ambitions; the gods also ensure that each individual’s fate is secured. The tragedies also reveal to the audience the difference between good and evil; quite often the individual’s good intentions are misconstrued and in turn cause them to do evil. Another common theme in the tragedies is the responsibility of humanity; although often tempted or controlled by the gods individuals need to learn to control their emotions and take responsibility for their own actions. The role the gods play is an essential part of the Greek tragedies and without them the stories would be drastically different. The role of the gods is to watch over the people and ensure that they fulfill their destiny. In the ancient times, they believed that each person’s life was determined by destiny or fate, which they could not escape; no matter what a person does to avoid their fate, the gods made sure that their destiny was fulfilled. An individual’s destiny is planned and organized, and it is the role of Zeus to supervise the mortals and ensure that each individual follows their destiny. In the book The Poetry of Greek Tragedy, Richmond Lattimore comments regarding Zeus, “he is the armed master, supreme because he possesses, and can wield the heaviest weapons. With such, in his rages, he can not only overthrow […] he can also…...

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