ΤΑ ΤΟΥ ΔΡΑΜΑΤΟΣ ΠΡΟΣΩΠΑ
ΧΟΡΟΣ ΓΕΡΟΝΤΩΝ ΠΕΡΣΩΝ
ΒΑΣΙΛΕΙΑ, μήτηρ Ξέρξου
Τάδε μὲν Περσῶν τῶν οἰχομένων Ἑλλάδ᾿ ἐς αἶαν πιστὰ καλεῖται, καὶ τῶν ἀφνεῶν καὶ πολυχρύσων ἑδράνων φύλακες, 5κατὰ πρεσβείαν οὓς αὐτὸς ἄναξ
Characters of the Play
Chorus of Persian elders of the King’s council
Queen, widow of Darius and mother of Xerxes
Ghost of Darius, the late King of Persia
Xerxes, the present King of PersiaProduced: 472 bc, as second play in the tetralogy Phineus, Persians, Glaucus of Potniae, Prometheus the Fire-Bearer.
Scene: Susa. Twelve chairs are set out for a meeting of the royal council. A mound (ignored until attention is drawn to it) represents the tomb of Darius. One side-passage is imagined as leading to the city and palace, the other towards the west and Greece.Enter chorus from the direction of the city.
Of the Persians, who have departed for the land of Greece, we are called the Trusted,1 the guardians of the wealthy palace rich in gold, whom our lord himself, King Xerxes son of Darius, chose by seniority
- 1A Greek term for the close counsellors of the Persian king; cf. Xenophon, Anabasis 1.5.15. The opening of the play closely echoes that of Phrynichus’ earlier play on the same theme (Phrynichus fr. 8), but for βεβηκότων “who have gone” Aeschylus substitutes οἰχομένων, which carries a strong (though by the speakers unintended) suggestion that those who have departed are destined not to return.