* Site-Outage Notice: Our engineering elves will be tweaking the Shmoop site from Monday, December 22 10:00 PM PST to Tuesday, December 23 5:00 AM PST. The site will be unavailable during this time.
Dismiss
© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Libation Bearers

Libation Bearers

by Aeschylus

Memory and the Past Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #10

(Chorus): "In the royal palace this is the third family-storm in turn
to have blown itself out and come to fulfillment.
Children devoured began the first,
misery hard and cruel;
second were a husband's sufferings, a king's,
and slaughter in a bath was his death for the Achaeans' leader in war;
now in turn a third has come from somewhere to bring safety – or should I say, death?
Where indeed will fulfillment be, where will lulling asleep stop the energy of Ruin?" (1065-1076)

These are the final words of the play. They summarize the problem of revenge, which is always backward looking, and tends to replicate the past in the present. What hope does this leave for the future? Will there really be no end of the cycle of violence? In this way, the theme of Memory and the Past dovetails clearly with the play's main themes of Revenge and Justice. This paves the way for Part 3 of the trilogy, Eumenides, but we won't spoil your fun in learning about (and reading) it now.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...

Advertisement
Noodle's College Search
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement