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The third of the Three Great Playwrights of Ancient Greek Drama Euripides who lived from 485 -406 BC is generally considered the most tragic and least polite of the major dramatists Like other Greek dramatists of the era he was a man of his times participating enthusiastically in the social and political life of his community Euripides wrote for Athens and the surrounding Attica and these geographical and historical limits gave his plays an intense and narrow focus The Bacchae considered the most successful of his plays through its characters themes and historical context provides an insight into Ancient Greek Society Euripides was more than seventy years old and living in self-imposed exile in King Archelauss court in Macedonia when he created The Bacchae just before his death in 406 BC The play was produced the following year at the City Dionysia in Athens where it was awarded the prize for best tragedy The simple plot of The Bacchae mixes history with myth to recount the story of the god Dionysuss tumultuous arrival in Greece As a relatively new god to the pantheon of Olympian deities Dionysus who represented the liberating spirit of wine and revelry and became the patron god of the theatre was not immediately welcomed into the cities homes and temples of the Greeks His early rites originating in Thrace or Asia included wild music and dancing drunken orgies and bloody sacrifice Many sober conservative Greeks particularly the rulers of the many Greek city-states feared and opposed the new religion The Ancient Greek Societys preoccupation with Religion is a major focusing point within this play Although
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