Hekabe (Hekabe)

Euripides (c.480–c.406 BC), translated by Theodoridis, G., (contributor-contact-email)

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Hecuba by Euripides, written around 424 BC, is a tragedy set in the aftermath of the Trojan War, focusing on Hecuba, the former queen of Troy. The play unfolds in two parts, beginning with the ghost of Hecuba’s son, Polydorus, revealing his betrayal and murder by Polymestor, King of Thrace, who was supposed to protect him. Polydorus has foreknowledge of many of the play’s events and haunts his mother’s dreams. Hecuba, now a slave, grieves her great losses and fears the prophetic nightmare of the previous night. The narrative progresses with the Greek decision to sacrifice Polyxena, Hecuba’s daughter, on Achilles’ tomb, despite Hecuba’s and Polyxena’s pleas.

In the play’s second part, Hecuba discovers Polydorus’ body and, engulfed in despair, plots revenge. She deceives Polymestor, luring him into a trap where she blinds him and kills his sons. The ensuing trial, presided over by Agamemnon, ends with Hecuba’s actions deemed just. The play concludes with Polymestor’s ominous prophecies about Hecuba’s and Agamemnon’s fates, as the Greek army prepares to return home.

Author Details

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Theodoridis, G.,

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