Next up is yet another volume of Euripides. This volume's plays are: Hippolytos, Children of Herakles, Suppliant Women, and Ion.

Hippolytos is one of the more fucked up things I've ever read. Basically, Aphrodite gets annoyed that Hippolytos is a merry virgin and favored by Artemis, the virgin huntress. So she decides to make his stepmother fall madly in love with him. Despite Aphrodite's trickery, the stepmother knows that this is all a really bad idea. But a nurse tells Hippolytos what is going on. And he flies into a rage, saying horrible things about women along the way. For example, "Damn you! I hate women. I'll never stop loathing them. Some say I'm insatiably hostile--but women are insatiably lewd. Either convert them to chaste decency--or allow me to stomp on them till I'm dead." The stepmother hangs herself. And a suicide note that she may or may not have actually written claims that Hippolytos raped her. His dad comes home and exiles him. There's a chariot crash. He's near death. Then Artemis shows up to set the record straight. But she can't help Hippolytos because Zeus has forbidden it, apparently. But she did pledge to go riddle one of Aphrodite's favorites full of arrows. I'm really just scratching the surface here. Read it yourself and prepare to be dumbfounded.

Sons of Herakles is pretty straightforward. Some big meany has taken over Herakles' kingdom and exiled his sons. They are in the protection of Herakles' nephew, Iolaos. They convince the Athenians to help them out. There's a battle. The Athenians win. Everyone lives happily ever after. Not very tragic. But Aristotle hadn't invented the definition of tragedy yet so that's okay.

Suppliant Women is basically the same story as Sons of Herakles but the sons are replaced by the mothers of the commanders who attacked Thebes in Seven Against Thebes. Creon wont release their bodies to be buried. The Athenians come to the rescue again and everyone lives happily ever after. These plays probably made their Athenian audience really feel good about themselves.

Finally, there's Ion. Ion is a priest of Apollo who doesn't know who his parents are. But he ends up reunited with his mother and some guy is tricked into thinking that he's the father despite the fact that Apollo is actually Ion's father. And none of this comes as any surprise whatsoever because Hermes explains everything in the first two pages. I'd strongly recommend giving this one a miss.

Just two more volumes of tragedy to go, awooh!