Oedipus at Kolonos: A New Translation

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9780062132109: Oedipus at Kolonos: A New Translation

Among the most celebrated plays of ancient Athens, Oedipus at Kolonos is one of seven surviving dramas by the great Greek playwright, Sophocles, now available from Harper Perennial in a vivid and dynamic new translation by award-winning poet Robert Bagg. Oedipus at Kolonos continues the story of Thebes’s tragic, now-blinded hero in the last days of his life, as he attempts to answer for his shocking crimes of incest and patricide, and seeks forgiveness before his impending death. This is Sophocles, vibrant and alive, for a new generation.

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From the Back Cover:

A soaring new translation of Sophocles' final masterpiece in which blind and homeless Oedipus reclaims his stature as Athenian drama's greatest hero

Produced after his death, Oedipus at Kolonos is Sophocles' final play and the last play in the Oedipus cycle. In it he explores anew the meaning of guilt and innocence, family loyalty and love, Athens' greatness, a hero's value after death, and the power of inscrutable gods to enhance all aspects of human life, including a hero's dying moments.

Oedipus finds his way, guided by his daughter Antigone, to the grove of the Furies near Athens, where Apollo has promised he will meet an extraordinary fate. As war brews in Thebes between his two sons, King Theseus befriends and welcomes Oedipus to Athens. Suddenly his daughter Ismene arrives with alarming news: the Thebans plan to abduct him. Treacherous Kreon tries just that. Then his desperate son Polyneikes, who earlier betrayed his father, begs Oedipus to bless him so he may defeat his brother and recapture Thebes. Oedipus and Theseus repulse both villains. The voice of Zeus then resoundingly summons Oedipus into the Furies' grove to meet his gentle and mysterious death, described by Sophocles in soaring and uncanny poetry.

This compelling new translation by Robert Bagg, modern in idiom while faithful to the original, brings Sophocles to a new generation.

About the Author:

Robert Bagg is the author of five books of poetry, including Madonna of the Cello, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. Prix de Rome, Guggenheim, Rockefeller, NEA, and NEH fellowships have supported his projects. Bagg's translations of Euripides and Sophocles have been staged in more than 60 productions worldwide.

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