Merope is a queen in Greek mythology and a character in Euripides’s lost tragedy Cresphontes, in which Merope nearly kills her son unwittingly but stops when she recognizes him. Aristotle uses Merope and Cresphontes as an example of the best kind of plot: one in which a “pitiable act” is unknowingly committed but stops because of recognition.
Merope Character Timeline in Poetics
The timeline below shows where the character Merope appears in Poetics. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 7. The Best Kinds of Tragic Plot
...and it has a strong “emotional impact.” The best plots, Aristotle claims, are those like Merope’s actions in Cresphontes: she nearly kills her son without knowing who he is, but she... (full context)