Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Euripides's Iphigenia at Aulis. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Iphigenia at Aulis: Introduction
Iphigenia at Aulis: Plot Summary
Iphigenia at Aulis: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Iphigenia at Aulis: Themes
Iphigenia at Aulis: Quotes
Iphigenia at Aulis: Characters
Iphigenia at Aulis: Symbols
Iphigenia at Aulis: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Euripides
Historical Context of Iphigenia at Aulis
Other Books Related to Iphigenia at Aulis
- Full Title: Iphigeneia at Aulis (in Greek, Iphigeneia en Aulidi)
- When Written: c. 408 B.C.E.
- Literary Period: Ancient Greek
- Genre: Greek Tragedy
- Setting: Aulis, Ancient Greece
- Climax: A messenger visits Clytemnestra to announce that Artemis has saved Iphigeneia from being sacrificed by replacing the girl with a deer upon the sacrificial altar
- Antagonist: Menelaos
Extra Credit for Iphigenia at Aulis
Modern Mythology. Greek filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos based his 2017 film The Killing of a Sacred Deer partly on the story of Iphigeneia at Aulis. In the film, a prophetic teenager who has recently lost his father warns his late dad’s wealthy and powerful doctor—who failed to save the man during an important surgery—that if the doctor does not choose one member of his own family to die by a certain date, they will all perish. The magical-realist film explores the fallout of being met with such an ultimatum and, in the end, the doctor does indeed make the impossible choice of selecting to kill one of his own children rather than doom his entire family. The doctor, played by Colin Farrell, can be seen as an allegorical stand-in for Agamemnon, while his family can be seen as a stand-in for all of Greece. In Iphigeneia at Aulis, Agamemnon is tortured by the idea that if he does not kill his child, his country will suffer and burn—such terrible, dramatic questions and dilemmas are clearly just as relevant to the artists of the modern era as they were to the writers and philosophers of antiquity.