I. Competitive Performance (by specialists, in open-air public arenas, before a large mass audience)

A. Terms

agonizesthai = to engage in competition, to perform

agôn = contest (cf. "agony")

ant-agonist = competitor

B. Arenas

1. Politics (lawcourts, assemly)

2. Sports (gymnasium, stadium)

3. Drama (theater)

II. Drama

A. Festival of Dionysus (City Dionysia); Thomas Martin

B. Site

Theater of Dionysus, located within sanctuary of Dionysus (Perseus link to text); plan

Theater at Epidauros

Altar (thymele)

Orchestra; image of orchestra; orchestra at Epidauros

Parodos; image; Epidauros parodos

Background building (skene; image)

Theatron (audience seating); image

Prohedria (preferential seating); image


B. Personnel

1. actors (three)

2. chorus (fifteen)


3. chorus leader


4. choregus; liturgy (Martin)

5. judges

C. Props; Martin on spectacle

1. masks

2. costumes; performance of Aristophanes' Birds on vase


Aeschylus, Agamemnon

I. Mythological Background

Line of Tantalos

Origin of curse on House of Atreus