Writing at a time of political and social crisis in Athens, Aristophanes (c.447-c.385bc) was an eloquent, yet bawdy, challenger to the demagogue and the sophist. In Lysistrata and The Acharnians, two pleas for an end to the long war between Athens and Sparta, a band of women and a lone peasant respectively defeat the political establishment. The darker comedy of The Clouds satirizes Athenian philosophers, Socrates in particular, and reflects the uncertainties of a generation in which all traditional religious and ethical beliefs were being challenged.
For this edition Alan Sommerstein has completely revised his translation of the three plays, bringing out the full nuances of Aristophanes' ribald humour and intricate wordplay, with a new introduction explaining the historical and cultural background to the plays.
About The Author
Aristophanes was born, probably in Athens, c. 449 BC and died between 386 and 380 BC. Little is known about his life, but there is a portrait of him in Plato's Symposium. He was twice threatened with prosecution in the 420s for his outspoken attacks on the prominent politician Cleon, but in 405 he was publicly honored and crowned for promoting Athenian civic unity in The Frogs. Aristophanes had his first comedy produced when he was about twenty-one, and wrote forty plays in all. The eleven surviving plays of Aristophanes are published in the Penguin Classics series as The Birds and Other Plays, Lysistrata and Other Plays, and The Wasps / The Poet and the Women / The Frogs.
|Further Reading||p. xlix|
|Translator's Note||p. li|
|Note on the Text||p. liv|
|Preface to The Acharnians||p. 3|
|The Acharnians||p. 13|
|Preface to The Clouds||p. 65|
|The Clouds||p. 75|
|Preface to Lysistrata||p. 133|
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Series: Penguin Classics
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
For Ages: 18+ years old
Number Of Pages: 304
Published: 5th May 2003
Dimensions (cm): 19.6 x 12.9 x 1.8
Weight (kg): 0.228