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Analysis

Literary Devices in Agamemnon

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

Probably the most famous symbol in Agamemnon is that of the "net." This image appears at numerous points in the text, most memorably when Clytemnestra appears outside the palace at the end of the p...

Setting

The play takes place in Argos, a city in the Peloponnese, a large peninsula in the south of mainland Greece. (Here's a map.) The action begins on the night that Troy is captured by the Greeks. We k...

Narrator Point of View

Technically speaking, Agamemnon doesn't have any narrator at all, because it's a play. Instead of hearing about what characters do, we actually see them do it. Of course, those characters also talk...

Genre

Aeschylus's Agamemnon is a tragedy because it is a play focused on the downfall of a great man, who in this case is none other than Agamemnon himself (big surprise). At the same time, however, it m...

Tone

Aeschylus's Agamemnon isn't very funny at all. There's no getting round it: this is one dark, scary, bloody, mind-bending play that may leave your eyebrows permanently furrowed. So why read it then...

Writing Style

OK, so this might seem like a pretty weird list of adjectives to describe somebody's writing style. Sure, "poetic" might seem pretty straightforward, but how can he be "subtle" and "extravagant" at...

What's Up With the Title?

Aeschylus's Agamemnon is named after its tragic hero, King Agamemnon of Argos. What's a tragic hero? Tragedies typically tell the story of a great man (sometimes woman) who gets cut down to size; t...

What's Up With the Ending?

At the end of Agamemnon, Cassandra and Agamemnon are lying dead and unburied; the Chorus has just narrowly avoided fighting Aegisthus and has called for the return of Orestes to avenge his father;...

Tough-o-Meter

There's no getting around it: Aeschylus's Agamemnon is a challenging play – even though its plot is about as simple as they come. Part of this simply has to do with cultural differences betwe...

Plot Analysis

Agamemnon has been gone for ten years.The Watchman reveals that Argos has been living without its king for ten years. He doesn't think that Clytemnestra, Agamemnon's wife, is managing things very w...

Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis: Tragedy

Agamemnon has been gone for ten years; a beacon appears.Typically in a tragedy, the "Anticipation Stage" happens when the tragic hero is somehow unsatisfied; this stage also usually involves the mo...

Three Act Plot Analysis

Agamemnon is coming back after ten years' exile.Agamemnon arrives home with the Trojan princess Cassandra. His wife, Clytemnestra, welcomes them in, but Cassandra prophesies that they are about to...

Trivia

Aeschylus himself appears as a character in a play by another ancient Greek playwright named Aristophanes. The title of the play? The Frogs. What's a serious dude like Aeschylus doing in a play wit...

Steaminess Rating

There's no sex in Agamemnon to speak of, aside from a little talk about how much Menelaus missed Helen after she ran off with the Trojan Prince Alexandros (a.k.a. Paris), or when Cassandra tells th...
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