Having managed to view fragments amounting to one half of the final episode of the decidedly average The Spartans, I variously learned or was reminded that:

  • Upon the Athenian defeat at Syracuse, about 7,000 Athenian invaders were imprisoned for a fair period of time in a quarry at Syracuse, exposed to the elements and fading fast. According to the transcript of the show,

    The Athenian prisoners had only one chance to live: the Syracusans had a passion for the verses of the playwright Euripides, and prisoners who could recite them in a style that pleased their tormentors were allowed to leave the quarry to be sold as slaves.

    To clarify: The Syracusans held the prisoners of war in an outdoor prison camp, subject to torture, and would not let them go until they said words which pleased them.

  • Upon the Spartan-led defeat of Athens, the Spartan leader Lysander erected an expansive monument to himself and his allies. The show did not display a reconstructed image, and I wonder if someone has assembled such a thing. I had thin luck Googling for it at all.

  • Following the Spartan defeat of Athens, Sparta was the dominant military power in the region, and “her commanders became known for corruption,” a fact which sourly comforts me.

Interestingly, I came across these class notes for a play by Euripides which appears to directly address these themes.

One thought on “Iphigenia at Aulis

  1. But what does this have to do with Iphigenia at Aulis? I just saw a staged version of this play in London and your comment drew me over here …

    Also, how did you get the Stranger gig?

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