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Satyr plays

LC control no.gf2014026526
Thesaurus/term listlcgft
Genre/Form termSatyr plays
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Variant(s)Satyric drama
See alsoBawdy plays
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Burlesques (Literature)
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Scope noteAncient Greek plays featuring a chorus of satyrs and mythical subject matter that provided comic relief after a trio of tragedies.
Found inBaldick, C. The Oxford dictionary of literary terms, 2008 (satyr play (satyric drama) A humorous performance presented in Athenian dramatic contests, following a trilogy of tragedies. The satyr play had a chorus of satyrs (men with horses' tails and ears), and its action was a burlesque of some mythical story appropriate to the foregoing tragedies, involving obscene language and gestures. Although fragments of satyr plays by Aeschylus and Sophocles have been found, the only complete example to have survived is the Cyclops (c.412 BCE) of Euripides. Tony Harrison's The Trackers of Oxyrhynchus (1988) is a modern satyr play adapted from the fragmentary Ichneutae of Sophocles.)
Harmon, W. A handbook to literature, c2009 (Satyr Play. The fourth and final play in the bill of tragedies in Greek drama: so called because the chorus was made up of horse-tailed goat-men called satyrs. The satyr play was intended to bring comic relief after the three tragedies that preceded it. It had the structure of a tragedy and subject matter from serious mythology but was grotesquely comic in manner. Thornton Wilder wrote a modern satyr play, The Drunken Sisters.)