Lysistrata

The Chorus of Old Men is composed of weak, shaky, doddering old men who are portrayed as comically inept and impotent. They grouchily complain about women and are furious when the Chorus of Old Women seizes the Acropolis. The old men, staunch supporters of the war, haul their phallic torches and firepots up to the Acropolis to burn and smoke Lysistrata and her women out, but the women’s pitchers of freezing water soon repel them.

The Chorus of Old Men Quotes in Lysistrata

The Lysistrata quotes below are all either spoken by The Chorus of Old Men or refer to The Chorus of Old Men. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
War and Peace Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the New American Library edition of Lysistrata published in 1984.
Lines 254 – 705 Quotes

What a catastrophe—
MATRIARCHY!
They’ve brought Athene’s statue to heel,
they’ve put the Akropolis under a seal,
they’ve copped the whole damned commonweal…
What is there left for them to steal?

Related Characters: The Chorus of Old Men (speaker)
Related Symbols: Athena and the Acropolis
Page Number: 258-265
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Preserve me, Athene, from gazing on any
maiden or maid auto-da fé’d.
Cover with grace these redeemers of Greece
from battles, insanity, Man’s inhumanity.
Gold-browed goddess, hither to aid us!
Fight as our ally, join in our sally
against pyromaniac slaughter—
Haul Water!

Related Characters: The Chorus of Old Women (speaker), The Chorus of Old Men
Related Symbols: Athena and the Acropolis
Page Number: 335-349
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fug

Lines 706 – 979 Quotes

Melanion is our ideal:
his loathing makes us free.
Our dearest aim is the gemlike flame
of his misogyny.

Related Characters: The Chorus of Old Men (speaker), The Chorus of Old Women
Related Symbols: Athena and the Acropolis
Page Number: 790-792
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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The Chorus of Old Men Character Timeline in Lysistrata

The timeline below shows where the character The Chorus of Old Men appears in Lysistrata. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Lines 254 – 705
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
The decrepit Chorus of Old Men , led by their especially decrepit Male Koryphaios (leader of the chorus), enters shakily and... (full context)
War and Peace Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
As the Chorus of Old Men nears the Acropolis, the old men increasingly struggle to carry their torches and firepots uphill.... (full context)
War and Peace Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
While the Chorus of Old Men prepares the torches, the Chorus of Old Women, led by their Female Koryphaios, suddenly enters,... (full context)
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
The two Choruses at last come face to face with one another. The Chorus of Old Men is surprised by the “flood of reserves” the Chorus of Old Women has managed to... (full context)
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
The Chorus of Old Men and the Chorus of Old Women fire more threats and insults back and forth. The... (full context)
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
...and she swings at him with a pitcher. He’s forced to hurriedly back away. The Chorus of Old Men goes into a worried dance. (full context)
War and Peace Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
...denounces tyranny, bashes the Female Koryphaios “in the jaw,” and runs cackling back to the Chorus of Old Men . (full context)
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
The members of the Chorus of Old Men have had it: they remove their tunics. The Male Koryphaios reasons that the men can’t... (full context)
Lines 706 – 979
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
The two Choruses assemble. The Chorus of Old Men sing proudly of a huntsman called Melanion who learned to live without women, “sustained by... (full context)
Lines 980 – 1323
War and Peace Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sexuality and the Battle of the Sexes Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
...be no more mischief between them, and then they address the audience in song. The Chorus of Old Men wish the Athenians wealth, and the Chorus of Old Women wish them good eating. (full context)
War and Peace Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Rebellion, Patriotism, and the Political Power of Comedy Theme Icon
...sing about jewelry on offer—the joke is they don’t really have anything to sell. The Chorus of Old Men , meanwhile, offer free wheat to the audience—the joke being that they own a tremendous... (full context)