Euripides: Medea
Euripides: Hippolytus

Euripides: Heracleidae

Hercules and Iolaus, Fountain mosaic from the Anzio Nymphaeum, Museo Nazionale RomanoHeracleidae or the Children of Heracles (Ancient Greek: Ἡρακλεῖδαι) is a tragedy by Euripides, probably first produced in Athensvaround 430 BC, in the early years of the Peloponnesian War. Its subject may have had a political resonance at the time, as Heracles was said to be the ancestor of the Dorian Greeks, a group which included the Athenians' main adversaries, the Spartans.

The play opens after Heracles' death, with his children fleeing persecution by Eurystheus, King of Argos. Accompanied by their uncle Iolaus, they take refuge at Athens. When King Demophon, son of Theseus refuses to give them up, Eurystheus declares war. Heracles' daughter Macaria offers herself as a sacrifice to ensure Athenian victory. With the aid of Heracles' eldest son, Hyllus, Eurystheus is defeated and captured.

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Free online texts

Gutenberg: The Tragedies of Euripides, Vol I, translated by Theodore Alois Buckley (1892). Multiple formats. 

Internet Archive: Heracleidae, Greek text with notes by E.A. Beck (1882). Multiple formats.

Internet Archive: Heracleidae, Greek text with notes by C.S. Jerram (1888). Multiple formats.

Internet Classics Archive: Heracleidae, translated by E.P. Coleridge. HTML and TXT formats.

Loebulus: L011N - Euripides -- Euripides III: Bacchanals. Madness of Hercules. Children of Hercules. Phoenician Maidens. Suppliants. Greek and English parallel text. Loeb edition, PDF format.

Perseus: Greek text and English translation by David Kovacs. Multiple formats.

Poetry in Translation: Herakleidae, translated by George Theodoridis (2010). Multiple formats.

Topostext: Heracleidae, translated by E.P. Coleridge. HTML format with accompanying map.

University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): Heracleidae, translated by E.P. Coleridge. Multiple formats.

Wikisource: Greek text and English translation. HTML and other formats.

Other Resources Heracleidae, synopsis and analysis.

The Conversation: If only we could ask Euripides about refugees, 2 October 2015, by Laura Swift.

History of Ancient Greece: Euripides at War, podcast by Ryan Stitt. Heracleidae, summary by Michael McClain, 13 March 2012.

Theatre Database: Heracleidae, analysis from A.E. Haigh: The Tragic Drama of the Greeks (1896).

Wikipedia: Children of Heracles.

The Great Conversation: Further reading at Tom's Learning Notes

Euripides: Heracles and Alcestis feature Heracles himself as a central character.

Sophocles: The Women of Trachis - portrays the death of Heracles.

A.E. Haigh: The Tragic Drama of the Greeks (1896).

 Ancient Greek resources: Learn to read Greek classics in the original.


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