The Libation Bearers

Hermes Character Analysis

Although commonly known as the god of luck, Hermes is also the guide who brings souls down to the Underworld. Prayed to by both Orestes,/span> and Electra, he is, in this context, a symbol both of divine power and of death. The siblings’ appeal to him emphasizes their obsession with their dead father, and their need to avenge him.
Get the entire The Libation Bearers LitChart as a printable PDF.
The libation bearers.pdf.medium

Hermes Character Timeline in The Libation Bearers

The timeline below shows where the character Hermes appears in The Libation Bearers. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Lines 1-585
Fate, the Gods, and Piety Theme Icon
Familial Bonds Theme Icon
Violence, Death, and the Dead Theme Icon
...faithful companion Pylades. Orestes, who has been exiled from Argos for many years, prays to Hermes, the god of the dead, to give him strength. He cuts two locks of his... (full context)
Revenge Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Fate, the Gods, and Piety Theme Icon
Familial Bonds Theme Icon
Violence, Death, and the Dead Theme Icon
Electra kneels at the grave and prays to Hermes, begging him to ask the dead and Mother Earth to hear her plea. She asks... (full context)
Lines 719-1065
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Familial Bonds Theme Icon
...when they will be able to help Orestes. They pray to Mother Earth and to Hermes to guide him, before noticing Cilissa, Orestes’ nurse when he was a child, in tears.... (full context)
Revenge Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Fate, the Gods, and Piety Theme Icon
Familial Bonds Theme Icon
Violence, Death, and the Dead Theme Icon
...pray to Apollo, praying that he provide light for Orestes’ dark path, and then to Hermes, begging him to help Orestes as well. They then address the absent Orestes, reminding him... (full context)