Titus Maccius Plautus: Persa (1897 words)

  • Gesine Manuwald (University College London)

Plautus’ comedy Persa (‘The Persian’ or ‘The Iran man’) is named after the disguise that one of the characters adopts as part of an intrigue. For, as in the case of other plays in the format of (originally Greek) New Comedy, the plot is based on a clever trick in order to obtain money. However, what is unusual about Persa is that almost all dramatis personae are slaves. When one of the slaves comes on stage at the beginning of the play, he talks about a lover in need (1); it soon becomes clear that this refers to the speaker himself. When he explains his situation to a fellow slave in the course of the first scene, the latter wonders that in this play the slaves themselves are the lovers (25),…

Citation:
Manuwald, Gesine. "Persa". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 04 December 2012
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=34722, accessed 10 December 2016.]