Euripides still dead
The world of performing arts, already grieving the loss of Lemmie and David Bowie, is in a state of shock after learning that legendary playwright Euripides is still dead. Seventy-nine years old, the Athenian dramatist passed away during a walk in the forest.
Euripides’ manager and father-in-law Mnesilochus announced the sad news last Tuesday on the official Facebook page of the legendary tragedian, asking the many bereaved fans to respect the family’s privacy during this ongoing time of grief.
From all over the Greek world, tributes to the genre-bending dramatist have flooded in. Spartan King Agesilaos took to Twitter to express his grief about Euripides’ persistent absence.
I grew up with the plays of Euripides. With his honeyed words, he won fans in all the Greek world. A great loss.
— Agesilaos (@ThisIsSparta) January 20, 2016
Euripides’ colleagues agreed:
Still dead, but on the stage his spirit lives on forever! Uniquely talented genius. Game changer. Visionary.
— Agathon (@RealAgathon) January 20, 2016
The most tragic of poets. Although Sophocles brought tragedy to its natural form, it was Euripides who pushed it even further.
— Aristotle (@OriginalGenius) January 21, 2016
Euripides was my most important inspiration. Fearless and creative, he gave magic for a lifetime. So sad that he is still dead.
— Seneca (@MAnnaeusSeneca) January 21, 2016
Still, the highly controversial writer, notorious for his intense portraits of female protagonists and his trademark use of the deus ex machina, is not missed by all his colleagues. “A most unpleasant man,” remembers Athenian tragedian Aeschylus, “who always wanted to sit at my table and might endlessly repeat the same joke about bottles of oil.”
Euripides has been a theater icon for decades. His 92nd play, Bacchae, premiered in Aegae (Macedon) only a few months before his death. He gained four victories as a dramatist and has inspired every generation ever since. His Trojan Women was put to the stage by French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre; Italian movie-maker Pier Paolo Pasolini adapted Medea for the cinema, starring Maria Callas; French playwright Racine was inspired by Euripides’ Hippolytus when he wrote his Phèdre. The same Euripidean model found its way to the Roman schools of law and was discussed in the Digests.
Performing artists from all over the world will continue to mourn the death of Euripides. On his death, 2421 years ago, he had written fifteen tragedies, one satyr play, and three romantic dramas.