Greek tragedy addressed mythological issues, and it was common for different playwrights to perform their own particular versions of the same mythical episodes. One of the dramatically performed myths was that of Philoctetes. This myth is currently known mainly thanks to Sophocles’ version, the only tragedy with that subject matter which has been preserved. But other playwrights, notably Aeschylus and Euripides, also wrote tragedies about the same events. This article deals in particular with Euripides’ version of



The Philoctetes myth was initially known through the epic poems. Thus, the Iliad (2.716-725) and also the Cypria (Proclus’ epitome or summary in Chrestomathy 144-146 Severyns) tell of Philoctetes being abandoned on the island of Lemnos because of a serpent’s

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Citation: Encinas Reguero, M. Carmen. "Philoctetes". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 March 2018 [, accessed 22 April 2024.]

38814 Philoctetes 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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