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AS and A Level: Classics

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  1. When Heinrich Schliemann emerged from Turkey in June of 1873 with a sizeable treasure, the whole world took note.

    The only reliable information that exists today about Schliemann, however, is the factual information in reference to his early childhood. Although throughout her much praised book The Discovery of the Greek Bronze Age she tends to be moderately sympathetic towards Schliemann despite numerous accounts of him lying to even the most respected scientists and the like during his time, J.

    • Word count: 1995
  2. Greek Justice.

    Webb 2 Of the three, Funeral Speech and Antigone share the most similarities in their approach to the issue. The base of the issue (the simple form of the word) is where a majority of the unity lies. In both texts, justice is looked upon as a verb, an action; a very tangible illustration of the term. Certain works of the various subjects or characters embody what is just and right. Lofty notions and vague ideas are pushed aside in favor of solid, concrete deeds and accomplishments.

    • Word count: 1405
  3. Outline your understanding of the Oedipus complex and its significance for psychoanalysis.

    There is a difference in this stage between male and female children. This will be discussed later. The Oedipus complex emerges during infantile sexual development. The theory of infantile sexuality and the Oedipus complex developed after Freud's self-analysis and abandonment of the seduction theory (Storr, 2001, p.29 /33). Freud believed that sexuality began at birth and it's onset came in two phases, the first phase from age 1-5 and the second stage being in puberty when sexuality re-emerges from the latency period. This development was seen to be normative and was key to the formation of personality.

    • Word count: 1601
  4. The Odyssey.

    Polyphemos then prays to his father, asking for Odysseus to return home late, in misery, with the loss of all companions, and with tribulations at home. As the god of the sea, Poseidon grants his son's requests and creates large waves and winds during Odysseus' voyage to the land of the Phaeacians. He causes another storm that sinks Odysseus' ship and drowns all of Odysseus' remaining crew; only Odysseus survives and is cared for by Calypso. At first glance, a reader may suspect the intentions of the goddess Calypso to be unfavorable to Odysseus.

    • Word count: 655
  5. The Odyssey.

    While Odysseus and his crew begin to enter the Scylla's territory, the Scylla snatches six of his best men, one for each of her heads. Seeing his trusted men being devoured is truly an upsetting experience for Odysseus. When Odysseus returns to his home in Ithaca, many more emotions come into play as he comes in contact with people he has not seen for twenty years. Odysseus tells Telemachos, his son, what his true identity is, and the men weep and embrace one another.

    • Word count: 819
  6. Women in the Odyssey.

    Goddesses being the daughters of divine beings do not have to prove their incorruptibility over and over again. Their divine births establish them as being pure and upright for eternity. This contrast in the stature of mortal and immortal women is clear from two instances described in the book. Clytaemnestra who murders her husband with the aid of her lover is described to be "a disgrace to womankind," while the goddess Aphrodite indulging in adultery with her immortal lover Ares behind her husband's back, does not have to encounter any of the blame or disgrace experienced by her mortal counterpart.

    • Word count: 987
  7. How are the figures of Telemachus, Odysseus and Athena presented in Books I to V?

    270 "stout-minded Odysseus"). As with most heroes of epic poetry, the usual character traits are highlighted in Odysseus (strength, nobility, a skill with words, cunning, etc.) yet most important of all is the theme of kleos (Greek for 'good reputation', a heroes reward for the hardships they have had to face) - "the hero's quest for immortal kleos is one of the oldest motifs of Greek epic and commonplace amongst all oral epic poetry´┐Ż" - and Odysseus is no exception.

    • Word count: 2127
  8. The affects of secrets as seen in 'Ghost' and 'Oedipus the King'.

    Alving, a main character in Ghost hid many secrets from her son, Oswald and in turn her morals and personal life were viewed upon differently by society. Women of Norway always strived to preserve their reputation and social eminence, but for Mrs. Alving, her reputation was marred. She appeared to have strong religious beliefs and with the exposed truth she could no longer be seen as a righteous individual, causing people in her personal life to have a vast withdrawal. When Regina leaves her house to journey on her own this is the beginning of her withdrawal towards Mrs.

    • Word count: 1011
  9. Electra - Set in Argos, many years after the death of Agamemnon.

    Orestes has been living in exile, and Electra has been made into a servant in her own house. Orestes, disguised, pays respect at the tomb of his father. While he was there, he heard somebody coming. He thought he heard his sister crying. Orestes wanted to hide because he wanted to assure himself if the woman crying was his sister. But his tutor disagreed and suggested to not talk to her at all. Electra comes to the grave with shows of mourning. She poured libations in homage to his father.

    • Word count: 585
  10. The Legend of Oedipus in "Scars," "On the Way to Delphi," and "Myth".

    "The longest [scar] bolted down from his elbow, finger-thick where the barbered wire plunged in... His tragic knuckles spoke wordless violence in demotic Greek." (Comment on quote) During the baseball scene, the narrator accidentally harms his father in the jaw, "dropping my father like a murdered king." This scene parallels the myth Oedipus as he strikes down his father Laius unknowingly. The narrator finds himself with a shattered image of his father, which is not as he once perceived. The idealistic image of his father was replaced by scars representing the loss of innocence.

    • Word count: 514
  11. How successful is the "Telemacheia" as an introduction to the events of the rest of the Odyssey?

    Which shows the gods reactions during the assembly. As in contrast, we got this reaction after Telemachus's speech, of one of the suitors, which is: "So you'd put us into shame, would you, and fix the blame on us? You are wrong. We suitors plead "Not guilty"." That lights up the difference of men more becoming of their own affairs and suffers more in proportion to their own mishandling of them. In creating of Telemachus, Homer has managed a sophisticated narration.

    • Word count: 1992
  12. Greek Gods - The Historical Background.

    In the Greek religion however there was not a sole source or reading that could be studied and preached, i.e. Muslims study the Koran, and Christians the Bible. However the Greeks were broader and less strict in the way they practised their faith, each different Greek city-state would devote itself to a particular god or a set of gods, and depending on the location of the state the characteristics of the gods could vary many city-states erected temples to their particular gods, and these gods were honoured in festivals and animal sacrifices.

    • Word count: 569
  13. Match Made in Heaven.

    Likewise, Penelope had her choice of one-hundred and eighty of the best men in Greece all vying for her hand, but she still "falls to weeping for Odysseus" every time she thinks of her beloved husband. Undoubtedly, The Odyssey's happy ending could not have occurred without their mutual fidelity. Cunning brilliance is the second attribute common to both Odysseus and Penelope, and it served to reunite them as much as their reciprocal devotion did. Odysseus is known as the "man of twists and turns", and presumably, he used his acumen to select a wife who could match him in matters of the mind.

    • Word count: 1661
  14. Agamemnon - King of Mycenae and commander in chief of the coalition that attacked Troy in the Trojan War

    Aegisthus was the son of Thyestes and his daughter Pelopia. Desiring to avenge himself upon his brother Atreus and acting upon the advice of the oracle at Delphi, Thyestes consummated an incestuous union with Pelopia. Shortly afterwards, Atreus married Pelopia, not knowing she was his niece. When Aegisthus was born, Atreus accepted him as his own son. Aegisthus later learned his true identity and, urged by Thyestes, killed Atreus. Jason was the son of Aeson, a king in Greece. His half-brother Pelias had taken Aeson's throne away from him, and Jason, the rightful heir to the throne, had been sent away as a child for his own protection.

    • Word count: 2188
  15. What qualities and features in your opinion make Oedipus Rex an example of Greek tragedy at its best?

    The two things that........... said made a Greek tragedy, produce its most effective impact on the crowd or the reader were Reversal and Recognition. These two things are used very well during the course of the play with great effect. To put it simply Oedipus starts out at the beginning of the play as the great man that defeated the sphinx, who knows and sees all, ironically at the end the reversal comes when he ends up being the humiliated blind man, the king turned to exile.

    • Word count: 815
  16. Dramatic irony in Oedipus.

    - To demonstrate their unfaithfulness, Oedipus and Jocasta continually reject the prophecies that the oracles deliver. - Ironic because in an attempt to comfort Oedipus, Jocasta tells him that the prophecies from the Gods are powerless, yet at the beginning of the next scene, we notice her praying sincerely to the Gods that she had just mocked. - "A fig for divination! After this I would not cross the road for any of it" - pg. 49 - "My lords, I am minded to visit the holy temples, bringing in my hands these tokens for supplication...

    • Word count: 1208
  17. What is the role of the chorus in "Oedipus the King" the "Lysistrata".

    *QUOTE* These speeches break up the whole play into little parts, making it more interesting. Music was probably used in these Choral Odes, and this also motivated the interest of the audience. Perhaps sometimes it even left the audience on the edge or relaxed them. This effect which is discussed later on in the essay is used in "Oedipus" as it is a tragedy.*LYSISTRATA SONG QUOTE* The chorus also interacted with the main characters, telling them what to do, or giving advice.

    • Word count: 1627
  18. "In the play, 'Oedipus the King' Sophocles argues that it is fate not the individual which controls human destiny."

    Laius' action of immediately believing the prophecy and trying to avoid it, illustrates the strict belief that the Ancient Greek society had in fate. There was no questioning the authenticity of the prophecy or the fact that it would not come true. Laius, by killing his child has tried to take destiny into his own hands and avert his fate but he does not succeed, because eventually his own son does kill him. The Ancient Greeks believed that if the father abandons the son, disaster will result, which is what happens to Laius.

    • Word count: 1234
  19. Fate and free will.

    One example of Oedipus's free will was the fact that he took it upon himself to travel from Corinth to Thebes so that he would not have the opportunity to kill his adopted father and marry his adopted mother. Another example of Oedipus showing free will arose when he killed Laius. He could have let Laius pass without any confrontation but instead killed him over who would pass in the street first.

    • Word count: 531
  20. The Waterways to Freedom.

    Homer employs the act of the will to survive with the additional help of the immortals using diction, imagery, and structure to establish an apparent passage that focuses directly on man's struggle for freedom and the belief that man cannot escape his fate. One time or another, everyone has yearned for the comfort of having someone nearby, someone that leaves you feeling reassured and intact. For this need for companionship, the beautiful seductive "magical" (36) nymph Calypso seizes Odysseus and compels him to live a sensual yet vegetative existence where he wastes seven years of his ten year journey home on the lavish, luxurious island of Ogygia.

    • Word count: 1446
  21. Tragic Heroes: Oedipus, Antigone, and Medea.

    By doing so, they keep Oedipus at a higher rank. He is placed into an extraordinary circumstance after leaving Corinth, the only place that he knows as home, to escape his fate, which according to the oracle is to kill his father and to marry his mother. Leaving the oracle, and heading away from Corinth, Oedipus thinks that he is escaping his fate; however, he ends up killing a man at the crossroads, who he later discovers was, in fact, his father. The extraordinary circumstance continues to develop as Oedipus, upon entering Thebes and answering the Sphinx's riddle, thus conquering a plague within the city, is offered a Kingship and marries the widowed Queen Iokate.

    • Word count: 1151
  22. In this essay I will be considering the three main aspects of "The Simpsons". Firstly the idea of Equilibrium-Disruption-Equilibrium. This concept means that each episode follows a set pattern.

    The best example I have seen of Equilibrium-Disruption-Equilibrium is in the episode entitled "Bart gets an F". This episode starts off with Bart not having done his book review homework for school and making up the events of the book, "Treasure Island". He later finds out that he's going to have to drop back a year if he fails another test. This event starts off the Disruption. Bart does not want to stay back a year and has visions of himself with his son in the same class. The only way Bart could possibly move up with the rest of his class is by studying, so he asks a "boffin" to help him study if in exchange Bart helps the "boffin" become popular.

    • Word count: 1262
  23. Civilization and Savagery in The Iliad.

    By doing this, the reader feels drawn into the story and shares the horrors and futility the Greeks faced during the Trojan War. A large part of Homer's work is dedicated to war and battle scenes. The main reason for this is because many believed Greek society, which took place seven hundred years before Christ, was brutally violent. Fighting was an everyday occurrence and brought honour among the warriors. The Greek gods did not dissipate the violent society; in fact they encouraged it by demanding animal sacrifices as part of daily rituals.

    • Word count: 2017
  24. Classical Civilisations - What does the graves and tombs of both kings and commoners tell us about Mycenaean's.

    However a German businessman, Heinrich Schliemann had been fascinated by the stories of a well-known Greek philosopher, Homer. Schliemann believed in Homer's stories whereas many historians and archaeologists did not believe in any of the stories classifying them as myths.

    • Word count: 218
  25. I am performing in a Play called "Trojans". It is an old Greek legend but has been re-written and modernised as a play by Simon Adorian. It is about a siege of the city of Troy by the Achaeans.

    The other play I have studied is "Oedipus the King". This is a Greek play that is set in Greek times. Greek theatre differed very much from today's theatre because there was no scenery. It had a raised section on the back of the stage, on which actors stood in order to be seen better. Any murder that took place was committed off stage, but with the chorus filling in the details. The dead body was the brought on the stage on a flat low trolley with wheels to show who had been murdered.

    • Word count: 753

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