What Is A Eulogy? Ethos, Pathos, and Logos In Pericles’s Funeral Oration Speech

Thucydides offers one-hundred and forty-one speeches in his monumental history of the Peloponnesian War, yet the early eulogy offered by Pericles (in Book II) is surely the most famous. "Pericles's Funeral Oration" by Philipp Foltz in 1877 The word "eulogy" comes down to us from the Greek word eulogia meaning to offer praise, or even … Continue reading What Is A Eulogy? Ethos, Pathos, and Logos In Pericles’s Funeral Oration Speech

Aristophanes’s The Birds: A New City in the Sky

Aristophanes The Birds ("Ornithets") is the only comedy written by Aristophanes whose entire action takes place far from the city of Athens. Consequently, the play makes little mention of the circumstances of the Peloponnesian War, or of contemporary Athenian politics. It won second prize at the Dionysia in 414 BC. It is a play about the … Continue reading Aristophanes’s The Birds: A New City in the Sky

Socrates Ridiculed in the Clouds

The Clouds, first performed in 423 BC at the Dionysia, is Aristophanes's masterpiece despite receiving a mere third place at the Dionysia festival. Aristophanes's earlier plays had all been a string of successes. There is a rumor that, in anger at his loss over the Clouds, Aristophanes edited the original manuscript. This is referenced in … Continue reading Socrates Ridiculed in the Clouds

The Peloponnesian War, Book V: Battle Recommences and Melos Enslaved

Book V of Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War opens at the conclusion of the truce between Athens and the Spartans. Cleon leads the Athenians in an attack on Thrace. A double surprise attack is launched against Cleon and the Athenians by Brasidas of Sparta. The attack catches Cleon off guard and kills him en route, … Continue reading The Peloponnesian War, Book V: Battle Recommences and Melos Enslaved

The Peloponnesian War, Book IV: Armistice and Mounting Losses

Book IV of Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War opens with yet another revolt from allies of the Athenians, this time in the city of Messana. Syracuse encourages the revolt to prevent Athens from a clear path to Sicily. Additionally, Athens is again invaded by the Spartans under King Agis, son of Archidamus. Meanwhile an Athenian … Continue reading The Peloponnesian War, Book IV: Armistice and Mounting Losses

The Dangers of the Poets in The Bacchae

The Bacchae (Bacchantes) is Euripides's greatest play. It tells the story of Dionysus, the god of wine and revelry, as he jealously rebukes Pentheus, ruler of Thebes (the latter city of Oedipus), for his lack of faith in Dionysus's sovereignty. Pentheus's impiety ultimately costs his city and family their nobility -Dionysus, in disguise, persuades Pentheus … Continue reading The Dangers of the Poets in The Bacchae