Word and action: essays on the ancient theater

Thus, Euripides' Orestes ends with what has to be one of most breath-taking scenes in all of Greek theatre, employing every resource the Theatre of Dionysus in the Classical Age had to offer—certainly, it is hard to imagine a tragedian of this era calling for much else—still, hard as it may be to believe, Euripides has more up his sleeve than this tragedic traffic-jam. To understand what that is, one must take into account the full dynamics of Greek performance. What modern audiences overlook, though ancient audiences would not have, is that there is one speaking character, or set of characters, on each level of the stage, from top to bottom: Apollo (mechane), Orestes (roof of the skene), Menelaus (stage) and the chorus (orchestra).

Word and Action: Essays on the Ancient Theater

After a brief explanation about the role of orality and the meaning of literacy in ancient times, the essay will examine some possible evidences of literacy from the ‘epigraphic habit’ in classical antiquity – as epistolary exchanges (Vindolanda Tablets), inscriptions on artefacts (ostraka, lady’s shoe from Vindolanda, the ‘Nestor Cup’), epitaphs and dedications on monuments (the Pantheon in Rome, the tomb of Eurysaces the Bakker) and severa...


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DIME NOVEL: Cheap or sensationalist publications, especially the series begun by E. F. Beadle in 1860--consisting of reprints of thrilling tales, violent action, brief romance, and episodes from famous wars and dramatic historical periods such as the American Civil War or the Frontier period. These dime novels were usually paperbound and sold for 10 cents in the 1920s in America, hence the common nick-name (Shipley 169). The first major example was Ann Sophia's Stephens's Malaeska: The Indian Wife of the White Hunter, which sold over 300,000 copies in 1860 and remained immensely popular for a decade. Other famous authors who produced dime novels included Edward L. Wheeler, who created "Deadwood Dick," and J. R. Coryell, who created "Nick Carter," a detective who appeared in over one thousand separate short stories written by a dozen ghost writers up through the 1960s (Holman 162). Also called a (for the cheap paper it was printed on), the dime novel as a mass market publication was the next generation of the earlier British "" of previous years.


novel | Irish American Writers & Artists

The attrition of the civil wars on the old Republican aristocracy and thelongevity of Augustus, therefore, must be seen as major contributing factorsin the transformation of the Roman state into a monarchy in these years.

The Trial of Jesus: Authentic Historical Account

These two religions were practiced in different areas and at different times and, therefore, show that religion has played a critical role in every society and civilization.

American Jeremiad: A Manifesto - The New York Times

Another aspect of tragic discourse supports the view that the spectators of early Greek theatre needed help in following any discourse significantly more complex than a simple exchange of speeches. As poetry, the rhythms of dialogue in tragedy were somewhat predictable to the audience, especially if changes of speaker occurred at breaks in the poetic meter, the way, in fact, they regularly do in classical tragedy. That is, typically one character speaks a single full line of meter, and the other says the next and then the first another and so on, in a type of interchange called stichomythy (in Greek, stichomythia, "line-talking"). This clear and predictable pattern of exchanges of dialogue line by line helped the ancient audience understand which character was talking at any given moment, because they knew in advance when one character would stop speaking and the next one would begin.