Medea and Electra Electra, Prologue and Parados Questions and Answers

Euripides

Electra, Prologue and Parados Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Who was Agamemnon?

2. How did Agamemnon die, according to the Farmer?

3. Why does the Farmer call a fool anyone who calls him foolish for not sleeping with his wife?

4. What has Aigisthos ordered to protect his own place on the throne?

5. Which god has charged Orestes with avenging his father’s murder?

6. What has Orestes left at the tomb of Agamemnon?

7. What is Pylades’ relationship to Orestes?

8. When he first sees her, who does Orestes think Electra is, and why?

9. Why are the Chorus women so happy?

10. Whom does Electra seem to blame more for her woes—her mother Clytemnestra or her mother’s lover, Aigisthos?

Answers
1. Agamemnon was the victorious leader of the Greeks against Troy, husband to Clytemnestra and father to Electra and Orestes.

2. Agamemnon was killed by his wife’s treachery, and the hand of Aigisthos. Aigisthos was a particularly vile rival, given that he was the son of Agamemnon’s father’s greatest enemy, his brother Thyestes.

3. Because of his low–born state, he considers it would be an outrage to seduce a noble woman, and argues for the virtue of self–control.

4. He has offered a bounty for the capture of Orestes and forced Electra’s marriage to the Farmer to prevent her from having children with a legitimate claim to the throne.

5. Apollo has ordered the murder of his father’s betrayers.

6. Orestes left a lock of his hair and a sacrificial lamb at the tomb of his father.

7. Orestes refers to Pylades as his most loyal friend.

8. Orestes sees Electra coming back from the spring, carrying a water jug, and dressed in rags, and assumes she is a farm slave.

9. The Chorus women are planning to participate in the festal rites of the goddess Hera, Zeus’ wife, to ask for marriage blessings.

10. Although she targets both in her laments, more lines are devoted to her mother’s treachery.