Afternoon in Eprius
|Orestes murdering Clytaemnestra|
In a previous posting I posted a part of a play I was writing concerning Andromache former wife of Hector and now 15 years after the fall of Troy Queen of Eprius. In that part I gave queen Andromache a long soliloquy has a prologue to the play. In this prologue Andromache gave the story of how she became Queen of Eprius and how a crisis is threatening her kingdom in the form of a Greek attack. In the prologue Andromache mentions that Orestes and Eleckra, the Son and daughter of Agamemnon of Mycenae wish to talk with her concerning this threat. Orestes and Eleckra father Agamemnon had been murdered by Clytaemnestra mother of Orestes and Eleckra who avenged their father by killing their mother. Both of them had been driven into exile as matricides. Andromache has reluctantly decided to see them. However a unforeseen guest has arrived in the form of Chrysothemis sister of Elecra and Orestes and hated by them for refusing to help in avenging their father.
In this scene it is early afternoon and Orestes, Electra are trying to justify their act of vengeance and antipathy towards their sister to the Queen Andromache. Chrysothemis is not interested in justifying her behavior, she sees her siblings as blinded by hate and delusion and utterly oblivious to actual justice.
Orestes and Eleckra see their dead father has a hero and cannot tolerate the truth about him, further they see their mother has the reason for their suffering they have and still are enduring. They see their act of revenge as justice. Their mother they see as unnatural, un-womanly and evil and thus deserving of death.
Chrysothemis sees revenge as poisonous and dangerous. She has no illusions about her father or for that matter her mother. She sees ambition as a corrupter of men's nature and sees her father as one so corrupted. Honour and nobility she sees as high ideals easily corrupted and perverted. Her mother she sees has someone corrupted by suffering and rage. Chrysothemis believes that Agamemnon's deeds against their mother Clytaemnestra and corrupted her the way ambition corrupted Agamemnon. She is also infuriated to no end by the double standard applied to Agamemnon's sexual behavior as against their mother's.