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Adventures with Iphigenia in TaurisA Cultural History of Euripides' Black Sea Tragedy$
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Edith Hall

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780195392890

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195392890.001.0001

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Iphigenia’s Imperial Escapades

Iphigenia’s Imperial Escapades

(p.111) VI Iphigenia’s Imperial Escapades
Adventures with Iphigenia in Tauris

Edith Hall

Oxford University Press

Iphigenia in Tauris made an impact on the Roman culture was through the broad cultural dissemination of the type of escape plot in which a young Greek woman and man are separated, face serial dangers at the hands of barbarians, before a joyful recognition and homecoming. Chapter VI argued that the ancient Greek ‘romantic’ novels of the imperial period sometimes explicitly acknowledge their debt to Euripides' escape tragedies, above all IT. Moreover, it is this debt which in the Second Sophistic inspired Lucian's commentary on the relationship between the Euripidean plot and the subject-matter of prose fiction constituted by his dialogue on friendship between a Greek and a Scythian, Toxaris. The popularity of the escape plot is also revealed in the unique fragmentary performance text of an imperial theatrical burlesque of IT, the ‘Chariton’ mime, discovered on a papyrus at Oxyrhynchus in Egypt (POxy 413).

Keywords:   escape, ancient novel, Lucian, barbarians, romantic, Roman imperial, Second Sophistic, Oxyrhynchus, Chariton mime, papyrus

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