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Encyclopedia > Ajax (Sophocles)
Ajax
Ajax preparing for suicide
Written by Sophocles
Chorus Sailors from Salamis
Characters Athena
Odysseus
Ajax
Tecmessa
Messenger
Menelaus
Agamemnon
Eurysaces
Mute Attendents
Servents
Soldiers
Setting {{{setting}}}

Ajax is a play by Sophocles. We do not know the date of its first performance, but most scholars regard it as early rather than late in Sophocles' career. It chronicles the fate of the warrior Ajax after the events of the Iliad and the Trojan War. At the onset of the play, Ajax is enraged because Achilles' armor was awarded to Odysseus, rather than him. He vows to kill the Greek leaders who disgraced him. Before he can enact his revenge, though, he is tricked by the goddess Athena into believing the Greek kings are a nearby herd of cattle. He slaughters some of them, and takes the others back to his home to torture. Image File history File links Ajax_suicide. ... A Roman bust. ... Salamis may refer to Salamis Island in the Saronic Gulf of the Aegean Sea, near Athens, Greece, where the Battle of Salamis was fought in 480 B.C.. Salamis, Cyprus, an ancient city on the east coast of Cyprus. ... Helmeted Athena, of the Velletri type. ... Odysseus and the Sirens. ... Aias (Greek: ), or Ajax, king of Salamis, a legendary hero of ancient Greece. ... In Greek mythology, Tecmessa was the daughter of Teuthras, King of Teuthrania (in Mysia) or Teleutas, King of Phrygia. ... This article is about Menelaus the king of Sparta. ... The so-called Mask of Agamemnon. Discovered by Heinrich Schliemann in 1876 at Mycenae. ... In Greek mythology, Eurysaces was the son of The Telamonian Ajax and Tecmessa. ... A Roman bust. ... For other uses of the name Ajax, see Ajax. ... The Iliad (Ancient Greek Ιλιάς, Ilias) is, along with the Odyssey, one of the two major Greek epic poems traditionally attributed to Homer, a supposedly blind Ionian poet. ... Combatants Greek Alliance, or Achaeans, including Mycenae, Sparta Trojans and allies 1 Commanders Agamemnon Menelaus Achilles Odysseus Ajax Priam Hector Paris Aeneas Strength 1186 ships carrying 100-130,000 60-70,000 1 According to Homer Trojans were Greeks This article is about the mythological Greek war. ... The Wrath of Achilles, by François-Léon Benouville (1821-1859) (Musée Fabre) In Greek mythology, Achilles, also Akhilleus or Achilleus (Ancient Greek ) was a hero of the Trojan War, the central character and greatest warrior of Homers Iliad, which takes for its theme, not the War... Odysseus and the Sirens. ... Helmeted Athena, of the Velletri type. ...


After coming to his senses, he pities himself over his disgrace. His wife Tecmessa pleads for him not to leave her and her child unprotected. He pretends that he is moved by her speech, and says that he is going out to purify himself and bury the sword given to him by Hector. After he has gone, a messenger arrives to say that the seer Calchas has warned that if Ajax leaves his house that day, he will die. His wife and soldiers try to track him down, but are too late. Ajax had indeed buried the sword but left the blade sticking out of the ground. His body is found after having thrown himself on it. Sophocles lets us hear the speech Ajax gives immediately before his suicide, in which he calls for vengeance against the whole Greek army. In Greek mythology, Tecmessa was the daughter of Teuthras, King of Teuthrania (in Mysia) or Teleutas, King of Phrygia. ... Hector brought back to Troy. ... In Greek mythology, Kalkhas Thestórides, or Calchas (brazen) for short, was a powerful prophet. ...


The last part of the play revolves around the dispute over what to do with Ajax's body. Ajax's half brother Teucer intends on burying him despite the demands of Menelaus and Agamemnon that the corpse is not to be buried. Odysseus, although previously Ajax's enemy, steps in and persuades them to allow Ajax a proper funeral. An argument over whether to deny the burial of a disgraced man is the subject of Antigone, another early play by Sophocles. Two figures in Greek mythology had the name Teucer: The son of Hesione and Telamon, Teucer fought with his half-brother, Ajax the Great, in the Trojan War and is the legendary founder of the city Salamis on Cyprus. ... This article is about Menelaus the king of Sparta. ... The so-called Mask of Agamemnon. Discovered by Heinrich Schliemann in 1876 at Mycenae. ... Antigone is a tragedy written in 442 BC by Sophocles. ...


Translations

Plays by Sophocles

  Results from FactBites:
 
Sophocles (2686 words)
SOPHOCLES was born in the autumn of 497 [B.C.], twenty-eight years after Aeschylus.
Sophocles was married to a wife named Nicostrata, by whom he became the father of Iophon.
Two portraits of Sophocles are known to have existed in ancient times -- the painting in the Stoa, in which he was represented as playing the harp, and which was probably the work of the fifth century; and the bronze statue erected in the theatre towards the close of the fourth.
Ajax (Sophocles) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (380 words)
He pretends that he is moved by her speech, and says that he is going out to purify himself and bury the sword given to him by Hector.
Sophocles lets us hear the speech Ajax gives immediately before his suicide, in which he calls for vengeance against the whole Greek army.
Ajax's half brother Teucer intends on burying him despite the demands of Menelaus and Agamemnon that the corpse is not to be buried.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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