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University of Toronto Scarborough
Laura Jane Wey

Lecture 3 PROMETHEUS Stories about Prometheus  Aids Zeus in war againt Titans  Crafts mankind  Sets precendent for what men sacrifice to the gods (fat covered bones)  Steals fire from heaven for humans  Refuses to divulge the secret concerning which of Zeus’s sons would overthrow him  Gets severely punished and later released Greek Tragedy: Overview  Aristotle identifies the dithyramb (=hymn sung and danced in honor of Dionysus) as the origin of Athenian tragedy  Tragedies performed at annual events called the Dionysia from 6 thcentury BCE onward; retained strong choral component  3 poets selected each year to compete in the Dionysia; each poet must produce 3 tragedies and a satyr play  Aeschylus was the first of the three major tragedians in Classical Athens (the other two: Sophocles & Euripdes) Aeschylus (circa 525-455BC)  “father of tragedy”  credited with expanding the cast from one to two actors and cutting the chorus from 50-12 members  won first prize at city Dionysia 13 times (Sophocles: 18; Euripides: 5) Prometheus Bound “Episodic” structure; stationary protagonist visited by a series of characters  strength, force & Hephaestus  chorus of nymphs  oceanus  Io (maiden loved by Zeus but Hera was jealous so told Zeus to cheange her into a young female cow)  hermes The Portrayal of Prometheus in Prometheus Bound  As defiant rebel o 312-315 o 1146-1150 o 1170-1194  as champion of mankind o 272-286; 293-304  instead of saying he gave mankind fire, he says that he “saved” mankind from Zeus  Prometheus thinks fire is a gift and will lead to many other skills to man  as civilizer o 512-575  Prometheus teaches the people of civilization  Taught them numbers (counting) and letters (as language) & memory (how to remember things)  Taught mankind how to use chariots (means of transportation), farming, & building houses  as possessor/keeper of knowledge o 197-212  Prometheus talking about Zeus o 24
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