The plays of Aristophanes

by 21cstories

A greek vase on the coverpageAristophanes was a Greek playright and wrote comedies in the 5th century BC. Some of his plays include – Clouds, Knights, Assemblywomen (Women in power), and Lysistrata.

The plays are are quite hilarious, and mostly fun to read. At places they are also a bit too explicit. The phrase “to be or not to be – that is the question” – occurs in one of his translated plays – Knights.

In Knights, the writer doesn’t spare anybody. He mocks everyone – politicians, courts, lawyers, other writers, even Socrates. The play is replete with sexual and profane double meanings, and outright profanity.

Can’t give samples here, too explicit! (e.g.”can’t row two boats together.”) When the young boy in Assemblywomen is chased by old hags, the young girl tells them they are old enough to be his mother, and the boy then says: “Who do you think I am, king Oedipus?”!!! The most hilarious joke occurs in Knights – the ‘Bakis-Fakis’ one.

Lysistrata is about the women of Greece who devise a new technique to gain favours from men who are engaged in a war.