Ion
24%
off

Ion

3.62 (368 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Volume editor  , Translated by 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 3 business days
When will my order arrive?

Description

One of Euripides' late plays, Ion is a complex enactment of the changing relations between the human and divine orders and the way in which our understanding of the gods is mediated and re-visioned by myths. The story begins years before the play begins, with the rape of the mortal Kreousa, queen of Athens, by Apollo. Kreousa bears Apollos' child in secret then abandons it. Unbeknownst to her, Apollo has the child brought to his temple at Delphi to be reared by the priestess as ward of the shrine. Many years later, Kreousa, now married to the foreigner Xouthos but childless, comes to Delphi seeking prophecy about children. Apollo, however, speaking through the oracle, bestows the temple ward, Ion, on Xouthos as his child. Enraged, Kreousa conspires to kill as an interloper the very son she has despaired of finding. After mother and son both try to kill each other, the priestess reveals the birth tokens that permit Kreousa to recognize and embrace the child she thought was dead. Ion discovers the truth of his parentage and departs for Athens, as a mixed blood of humanity and divinity, to participate in the life of the polis. In Ion, disturbing riptides of thought and feeling run just below the often shimmering surfaces of Euripidean melodrama. Although the play contains some of Euripides' most beautiful lyrical writing, it quivers throughout with near disasters, poorly informed actions and misdirected intentions that almost result in catastrophe. Kreousa says at one point that good and evil do not mix, but Euripides' argument, and what the youthful Ion strives to understand, is that human beings are not only compounded of good and evil, but that the two are often the same thing differently experienced, differently understood, just as beauty and violence are mixed both in the gods and in the mortal world.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 112 pages
  • 126 x 200 x 8mm | 136.08g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195094514
  • 9780195094510
  • 1,989,077

Review quote

"A comprehensive introduction by Peter Burian explores major themes and structures."--Publishers Weekly"A very readable and passionate translation. Euripides' pathos comes out well."--Clifford Broenimur, University of Massachusetts at Amherst"Thanks for an excellent version of this important text."--Professor David Hopes, UNCA"Euripedes' Ion has much to recommend it to today's reader or dramatic producer....Ion can be used in myth-courses (an excellent text on Apollo), drama-in-translation courses, and also women-in-antiquity courses, since Kreousa exemplifies in miniature the plight of ancient women....The new addition to the Greek Tragedies in New Translatioins...presents a marvellously balanced introduction to the play."--Bryn Mawr Classical Reviewshow more

Back cover copy

One of Euripides' late plays, Ion tells the story of Kreousa, queen of Athens, and her son by the god Apollo. Apollo raped Kreousa; she secretly abandoned their child, assuming thereafter that the god had allowed him to die. Ion, however, is saved to become a ward of Apollo's temple at Delphi. In the play, Kreousa and her husband Xouthos go to Delphi to seek a remedy for their childlessness; Apollo, speaking through his oracle, gives Ion to Xouthos as a son, enraging the apparently still childless Kreousa. Mother tries to kill son, son traps mother at an altar and is about to do her violence; just then, Apollo's priestess appears to reveal the birth tokens that permit Kreousa to recognize and embrace the child she thought she had lost forever. Ion must accept Apollo's duplicity along with his benevolence toward his son. Disturbing riptides of thought and feeling run just below the often shimmering surface of this masterpiece of Euripidean melodrama. Despite Ion's "happy ending", the concatenation of mistaken identities, failed intrigues, and misdirected violence enacts a gripping and serious drama. Euripides leaves the audience to come to terms with the shifting relations of god and mortals in his complex and equivocal interpretation of myth.show more

About Euripides

W.S. Di Piero is Professor of English at Stanford University.show more

Rating details

368 ratings
3.62 out of 5 stars
5 23% (83)
4 30% (112)
3 36% (132)
2 10% (35)
1 2% (6)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X