Born in 495 B.C. about a mile northwest of Athens, Sophocles was to become one of the great playwrights of the golden age. The son of s wealthy merchant, he would enjoy all the comforts of thriving Greek empire. He studied all of the arts. At the age of twenty-eight, his studies complete, he was ready to compete in the City Dionysia.
In the first competition, Sophocles took first prize. Sophocles wrote many more plays, and he went on winning eighteen first prizes and he would never fail to take at least second. One of the greatest plays Sophocles ever wrote is Electra.
Electra is a story of revenge. In this play, Electra, the daughter of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, awaits the return of her brother Orestes so that he can avenge the murder of their father. Hatred towards her mom and her lover has become the main focus for Electra, and it is ruling her life. Electra can be considered almost as an ancient Greek translation of Hamlet. Girl loses father because fathers cousin and wife are having an affair. Girl plots revenge and relies on brother to carry out murders of their mother and their fathers cousin. A messenger comes and tells Electra that Orestes is dead due to a horse racing accident. Electra is distraught and does not know what to do. Orestes reappears (he was really alive!) and rescues sister from emotional meltdown and kills mother and then kills fathers cousin. Everyone is happy at the end, and the bad guys are dead.
Electra is a tragic play. It has a good plot and I enjoyed reading it a lot. I thought that it was very easy to understand and to picture what was going on back in those days. It was a story that was built up. It started slow and slowly got more exciting to a point that Electra found her brother and he killed everyone, and that point was the climax of the play. Sophocles is the person that invented the third actor, but since I did not see the play, it was a little bit hard to imagine the importance and the great dramatic affects of a third actor. Overall Electra was a fascinating play.