Philoctetes was a play by the Greek playwright Sophocles. Sophocles's play "Philoctetes" is an account of how Odysseus and Neoptolemus convince Philoctetes to return to the war. This chapter explores Sophocles' Philoctetes, the most morally complex of all of his extant tragedies. His wound grew worse and because he is alone on the island he has to use all his energy to remain alive. Already a member? Instant downloads of all 1386 LitChart PDFs (including. With his painful wound, he wants Neoptolemus to stay nearby. Neoptolemus agrees, and Philoctetes hands him the bow and arrows. Suddenly, Heracles appears from the sky, bearing a message from Zeus. Neoptolemus refuses but asks Philoctetes what he can reasonably do to help him. The sailors advise Neoptolemus to leave with the bow while the exhausted man sleeps. Neoptolemus stresses his determination never to return to Troy. The chapter focuses on each character in turn. They're like having in-class notes for every discussion!”, “This is absolutely THE best teacher resource I have ever purchased. Philoctetes, however, with his invincible bow, once the property of Herakles, becomes indispensable to the Greeks in their war against Troy. Philoctetes is a play written by Sophocles around 409 BCE. Neoptolemus says that the Greeks will kill him if he does, but Philoctetes promises to keep him safe with his unerring bow and arrows, so Neoptolemus agrees to sail Philoctetes home to Greece. Neoptolemus can’t be swayed, however, and Odysseus places his hand on his sword. Philoctetes's situation is immensely pitiable, and Odysseus is certainly in his "pre-trials and tribulations humbling experience" stage. The play begins with the arrival of Odysseus, a Greek warrior, and Neoptolemus, son of Achilles, at the island of Lemnos where they are seeking out Philoctetes, the greatest of Greek archers. He is told that Ajax is also dead. Neoptolemus is repulsed by the idea of treachery and initially refuses. Philoctetes angered the goddess Chryse when he trespassed on her shrine, and he will not agree to go to Troy with his bow and arrows until the gods decide it is time. The story takes place during the Trojan War (after the events of the Iliad, and before the Trojan Horse). According to Eugenia Tzitzilaki, the director of the New Workshop Theater's newest production, this particular Greek play is all about making the correct choice. John Jesurun wrote the Philoktetes-variations in 1993 on Ron Vawter 's request, it was the actor's last piece of work, considered his artistic testament, being performed while the actor was dying of AIDS . When he sets out along with the Greek army to fight in the Trojan War, he suffers a snakebite at the temple of the goddess Chryse. Philoctetes swears that he will defend the country with his bow. Once in Troy, Philoctetes will be cured of his painful wound, and he will kill Paris with his bow and arrows, bringing an end to the Trojan War. After Neoptolemus agrees, Philoctetes praises the day that brings them together and declares himself bound in friendship to the young warrior for all time. Electra’s triumph is thus complete. Philoctetes begs Neoptolemus not to leave him alone on the island, just as the sailor disguised as the merchant approaches. Neoptolemus asks permission to hold the mighty bow while Philoctetes prepares to leave the island. It is time for Neoptolemus to “prove his worth” and assist the Greeks by tricking Philoctetes. Philoctetes Summary. He ultimately agrees when Odysseus tells him that this is the only way to bring an end to the war. Odysseus orders Neoptolemus to find Philoctetes and tell him that the Greeks had convinced him to go to Troy to fight, but he left angrily after Atreus’s sons gave Achilles’s arms to Odysseus. 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