Societas Classica
“ST. CYRIL AND ST. METHODIUS” UNIVERSITY OF VELIKO TARNOVO - UNIVERSITY PRESS

Close-kin Marriages in Menander


Authors:
Daniela Tosheva

Pages: 85-96

Abstract:

The subject of this paper is the close-kin marriages in Menander’s comedies. The normative preference for close-kin marriage was different in fourth-century B.C. Athens from modern societies. However, incestuous relations between full blood brother and sister, or parent and child were considered wrong, and were never a comic material in Menander’s comedy which was concerned with realities of everyday life. I examine the comic purpose of introducing close-kin marriages in New Comedy, and I try to give explication on the cultural attitude towards endogamy. In order to explain these issues, I classify the close-kin marriages in three groups: (1) Brother-sister marriage; (2) First cousins marriage; (3) Marriage of the epikleros.

Keywords:

Greek New Comedy, Menander, Athens, close-kin marriage, epikleros.

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