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Posts: 10
Registered: ‎01-30-2007
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Hippolyta and the Amazons

Shakespeare based much of his plays in historical contexts and utilized mythology and fables in his works. Just beginning the play, I found myself researching the back story to Theseus and Hippolyta. Unfortunately, several versions of the story exist, including where Hippolyta is killed by Heracles (also known as Hercules) for her girdle/belt, and other versions where Theseus marries her sister Antiope instead. Included below is one very good resource (though quite long) and a few decent that support Shakespeare's version of the tale of Theseus and Hippolyta.

The Amazons by Guy Rothery (1910)
This e-book goes into much detail about the mythologies and histories of the Amazon women around the world. I read through the introduction and the first chapter, The Amazons of Antiquity to get a very good idea of what Shakespeare most likely drew his inspiration from. As I continue to read, it might just give me a new perspective on Hippolyta!

Wikipedia: Hippolyte and The Amazons
The Hippolyta article is very short, but gives the basics. The Amazons article gives similar background as the longer Rothery article with much less to read. Hippolyta
This article is concise and directly in line with the version Shakespeare chose for his play without much extraneous information.

Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night. ~ Edgar Allen Poe

Posts: 5,747
Registered: ‎10-29-2006
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Re: Hippolyta and the Amazons

Thanks, Samantha! I wonder what that portends for any of these marriages?
"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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