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The Birds by Aristophanes
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THE BIRDS
by Aristophanes


[Translator uncredited. Footnotes have been retained because they
provide the meanings of Greek names, terms and ceremonies and explain
puns and references otherwise lost in translation. Occasional Greek
words in the footnotes have not been included. Footnote numbers,
in brackets, start anew at [1] for each piece of dialogue, and each
footnote follows immediately the dialogue to which it refers, labeled
thus: f[1].




INTRODUCTION



'The Birds' differs markedly from all the other Comedies of
Aristophanes which have come down to us in subject and general
conception. It is just an extravaganza pure and simple--a
graceful, whimsical theme chosen expressly for the sake of the
opportunities it afforded of bright, amusing dialogue, pleasing
lyrical interludes, and charming displays of brilliant stage
effects and pretty dresses. Unlike other plays of the same Author,
there is here apparently no serious political MOTIF underlying
the surface burlesque and buffoonery.

Some critics, it is true, profess to find in it a reference to