Lit 230, Section 6,13
November 14, 2013
Clytemnestra notices Orestes
In 458 BC, Agamemnon was murdered by his own wife, Clytemnestra. Orestes, the son of Agamemnon, has come back home from exile to avenge Agamemnon's death with his friend Pylades. Orestes cuts two locks of hair as an offering to a river in Argos, and also to the spirit of his father. After making these offerings, Orestes sees his sister Electra coming up to their fathers tomb, with the chorus. Due to a dream Clytemnestra's been having, she sends Electra to pour out libations on Agamemnon's tomb . While pouring this libation, Electra sees a lock of hair that looks much like her own. She starts to think about who's it might be, since it's not hers and comes to the conclusion that it has to be her brother Orestes' hair. She then notices some footsteps around the tomb that also match her own along with another pair of footsteps, which convinces her that Orestes must me alive. In this essay I will argue that Clytemnestra recognizes Orestes right away as Electra did.
In the beginning of the play Electra goings to Agamemnon's tomb and makes a speech saying that Clytemnestra sent her to make the offerings. Being that these offerings were coming from his murderer, she feels as if there is nothing she could say to make the situation better. So she pours out her libations on the tomb and prays that Orestes comes to avenge his fathers death as the chorus advise her to do so. She notices the lock of hair left on the tomb saying that " It looks just like… like mine. It looks identical. It really looks like his"(226-230). Then as more evidence she notices that her footsteps match the ones on the ground around the tomb. "The heels, the arches--these prints are shaped just like my own"(265). Orestes comes out and shows himself by saying "You've come to see the person you've been praying for/you're looking at Orestes in the flesh"(270/282).
Orestes then reveals...
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