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Phaedra and Other Plays : Penguin Classics - Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Phaedra and Other Plays

Penguin Classics

By: Lucius Annaeus Seneca, R. Scott Smith (Transcribed by)


Published: 25th August 2011
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'Time flits about on fickle wings, and fleeting Fortune offers no one guarantees'

Living in Rome under Caligula and later a tutor to Nero, Seneca witnessed the extremes of human behaviour. His shocking and bloodthirsty plays not only reflect a brutal period of history but also show how guilt, sorrow, anger and desire lead individuals to violence. The hero of Hercules Insane saves his own family from slaughter, only to commit further atrocities when he goes mad. The horrifying death of Astyanax is recounted in Trojan Women, and Phaedra deals with forbidden love. In Oedipus a nervous man discovers himself, while Thyestes recounts the bitter family struggle for a crown. Of uncertain authorship, Octavia dramatizes Nero's divorce from his wife and her deportation. The only Latin tragedies to have survived complete, these plays are masterpieces of vibrant, muscular language and psychological insight.

This vivid new translation renders the plays in prose and verse. The introduction examines Seneca's life, the influence of Stoic philosophy on his work, and his impact on early modern tragedy. Also included are prefaces to each play, a chronology, further reading and notes.

Translated with an introduction and notes by R. SCOTT SMITH

Acknowledgementsp. vii
Introductionp. ix
Selected Further Readingp. xxvii
A Note on the Translationp. xxix
Preface to Hercules Insanep. 3
Hercules Insane
Preface to Trojan Womenp. 55
Trojan Women
Preface to Phaedrap. 103
Preface to Oedipusp. 151
Preface to Thyestesp. 197
Preface to Octaviap. 241
Notesp. 281
Glossaryp. 306
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780140455519
ISBN-10: 0140455515
Series: Penguin Classics
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 368
Published: 25th August 2011
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 13.1  x 2.1
Weight (kg): 19.8
Edition Number: 1