Euripides: Orestes
Euripides: Iphigenia at Aulis

Euripides: The Bacchae

Pentheus being torn by maenads. Casa dei Vettii. Via Wikimedia Commons.The Bacchae (Greek: Βάκχαι) is a tragedy by Euripides, found at his death in 406 BC, and produced in 406 BC. The play dramatises the introduction into Greece of the worship of the god Dionysus. Visiting Thebes, he is rejected by king Pentheus, and takes his revenge by driving the women of the city into a frenzy of madness. Among them, is Pentheus' mother Agave, who tears her son to pieces before recovering her senses and realizing what she has done. The play ends with their family being banished from the city.

Free online texts

Gutenberg: The Bacchae, translated by Gilbert Murray (1906). Multiple formats.

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

Internet Archive: The Bacchae. Verse translation by Gilbert Murray. Multiple formats.

Internet Classics Archive: The Bacchantes. 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 T.A. Buckley. HTML and XML formats.

Poetry in Translation: Bacchae, translated by George Theodoridis. Multiple formats.

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

Wikisource: Greek text and English translation by Arthur Way. HTML and other formats.

Other Resources

Gutenberg: Euripides and His Age, by Gilbert Murray.

History of Ancient Greece: Euripides at War, podcast by Ryan Stitt.

History of Ancient Greece: The Dionysian Mysteries, podcast by Ryan Stitt.

Librivox: The Bacchae, public domain audiobooks.

Literature and History: The Traditions of Our Forefathers - Euripides' The Bacchae. Podcast and transcript by Doug Metzger.

Wikipedia: The Bacchae

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

Euripides: Iphigenia at Aulis - produced in the same year.

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

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

Bloom's Western Canon: The Bacchae is listed.


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