Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)


Agamemnon (a-guh-MEHM-nahn), of the doomed House of Atreus, King of Argos and leader of the Greek expedition against Troy. When the Greeks were de2tained at Aulis, he had been commanded by the gods to sacrifice his daughter Iphigenia, so that the fleet might sail. This deed brought him the hatred of his wife, Clytemnestra, who plots his death. On his return to Argos after the fall of Troy, she persuades him to commit the sin of pride by walking on purple carpets to enter his palace. Once within the palace, he is murdered in his bath by Clytemnestra and her lover, Aegisthus.


Clytemnestra (KLI-tuhm-NEHS-truh), the daughter of Leda and wife of Agamemnon. Infuriated by his sacrifice of their daughter Iphigenia, she murders him and rules Argos with her lover, Aegisthus, until she is killed by her son Orestes.


Cassandra (ka-SAN-druh), the daughter of King Priam of Troy. She is fated always to prophesy truth but never to be believed. Captured by Agamemnon and brought to Argos, she foretells the king’s death and is then killed by Clytemnestra.


Aegisthus (ee-JIHS-thus), a cousin of Agamemnon and the lover of Clytemnestra. After Agamemnon’s death, he rules Argos with her until he is slain by Orestes.


Orestes (oh-REHS-teez), the son of...

(The entire section is 656 words.)