Sophocles, Trachiniae [Women of Trachis]

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Women of Trachis

dramatizes the destruction of Heracles, the most celebrated hero in Greek civilization, by his wife Deianeira. The son of Zeus and the mortal woman Alcmene, Heracles was revered throughout Greece for his heroic deeds, in particular his destruction of numerous monsters and criminals. These “labours” were understood as a civilizing force because they made previously uninhabitable parts of the world safe for human settlement (see lines 1010-1013, 1090-1102). In our play, the hero has finally completed his tasks, but his fate still hangs in the balance; Deianeira tells us that Heracles left a prophecy stating that at the current time he would either die or his labours would come to an end (76-81, restated in greater detail at 153-177). It will be revealed that in fact…

2902 words

Citation: Levett, Brad. "Trachiniae". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 16 December 2016 [, accessed 22 April 2024.]

8421 Trachiniae 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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