Five Comedies of Aristophanes Author:Translated by Benjamin Bickley Rogers Five of the eleven extant comedies of Aristophanes, the greatest comic playwright who ever lived, are gathered in this volume in the translations of Benjamin Bickley Rogers, which have themselves become an English classic. In addition to his immense powers for joyous farce and brilliant fantasy, Aristophanes is characterized by a consummate and... more » delicate lyrical gift, and a serious and engaged presentation of the major moral and political issues of his day--or of any day. A comedy of Aristophanes is "a wild though highly intellectual farce" (Gilbert Murray); "a dramatized debate...in which the persons represent opposing principles" (S.H. Butcher).
Benjamin Bickley Rogers was pre-eminently well equipped to translate Aristophanes by his combination of extensive and minute scholarship and his gifts as a comic poet, which allowed him to come closer than any other translator to the spirit of the original. His lyric powers, which range from the pure song of Shelley to the witty patter of W.S. Gilbert, sustain beautifully the dance of ideas which is at the heart of the plays of Aristophanes. Rogers' translations, writes Gilbert Murray, "are the fruit of patient and loving work, of fine scholarship and intimate appreciation, and above all, they are translations with a soul and spirit."« less