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Ladies' GreekVictorian Translations of Tragedy$
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Yopie Prins

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691141893

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691141893.001.0001

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Hippolytus in Ladies’ Greek (with the Accents)

Hippolytus in Ladies’ Greek (with the Accents)

(p.152) Chapter Four Hippolytus in Ladies’ Greek (with the Accents)
Ladies' Greek

Yopie Prins

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines how women contributed to a major shift in the reception of Euripides by focusing on his tragedy Hippolytus. There was growing interest toward the end of the nineteenth century in the female tragic heroines of Euripidean tragedy and in its “feminine” lyricism. Hippolytus's highly eroticized, lyricized language appealed to British aesthetes such as John Addington Symonds, who engaged in an elaborate literary correspondence with the young Agnes Mary Francis Robinson and encouraged her to translate Hippolytus. The chapter begins with a reading of the letters of Symonds and Robinson (and Greek letters in their letters) and goes on to analyze Robinson's 1881 translation of Euripides in The Crowned Hippolytus. It shows how the metrical virtuosity of Robinson's translation made it possible to read Ladies' Greek “with” the accents and argues that the early work of Hilda Doolittle owes much to this late Victorian vision of Euripidean tragedy.

Keywords:   women, Euripides, tragedy, Hippolytus, John Addington Symonds, Agnes Mary Francis Robinson, The Crowned Hippolytus, translation, Ladies' Greek, Hilda Doolittle

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