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Euripedes Hippolytus

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Euripides’ Hippolytus

Artemis’ informative speech to Hippolytus not only displays the dramatic irony present throughout the play, but also solidifies many predominant themes present during the play. This passage summarizes the entire play as Artemis describes the plans of the characters, going on to blame Phaedra, the Nurse, Aphrodite, and Theseus. (Halleran, 276) Through Artemis’ passage (Euripides, 1283-1312), the truth about Phaedra and Hippolytus, unknown and misunderstood by Theseus, finally surfaces. As Artemis reveals the plot to Theseus in the passage, the themes of honour and relationship between man and god are evident. Hippolytus’ relationship with the goddesses Artemis and Aphrodite, along with his honour and pride, are well established directly from the prologue, and further solidified in this passage by Artemis. Hippolytus is extremely devoted to the goddess Artemis, honouring her by choosing to remain sexually chaste. His ability to remain sexually chaste, along with his strong will to pursue hunting activities explains the relationship he has with the goddess. Artemis displays honour for Hippolytus in this passage, informing Theseus the reason for her presence is, “[…] to reveal [his] son’s mind/ as just, so that [Hippolytus] may die with a good reputation.” (Euripides, 1298-1299) Artemis begins by mentioning her primary reason for being present is a result of her desire for Hippolytus to die with a good reputation. Artemis further reveals Hippolytus’ honour and pride when she informs Theseus, “[Hippolytus], […], did not go along/ with these words, nor in turn, since he is pious by birth, / did he retract the pledge of his oath when he was abused/ by you.” (Euripides, 1307-1310) Artemis emphasizes the honour Hippolytus dies with, as he stays true to his oath, although, by doing so, requiring him to face death as per the wishes of his father,...

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