Why Is The Libation Bearers Called The Libation Be

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Why is the Libation Bearers called the Libation Bearers? In seeking an answer to this question, there are many roads that could be taken. The Chorus themselves are Libation Bearers. The Chorus is made up of Trojan women, originally taken by Agamemnon from Troy to Argos. The Chorus has been commissioned by Clytemnestra to offer libations up for Agamemnon. This is a fruitless attempt by Clytemnestra to utilize these Libation Bearers in order to atone for the murder of her husband. This is due to the curse laid upon the House of Atreus by Thyestes. This curse necessitates that one murder must follow upon another. No matter the amount of libations paid in homage of Agamemnon's death will forgo the curse.

This interpretation takes as fact that fate/the gods control all and that the each destiny is defined prior to any occurrence. An interesting point is the role of the Chorus as the Libation Bearers in relation to the play.

Generally, the Chorus is secondary, offering advice that is generally discounted or goes unheard. In this, Electra seeks the Libation Bearers advice, and gives credence to it.

One could also suggest that even though the Chorus are explicitly Libation Bearers, so too are Electra and Orestes. Both Electra and Orestes are going to try and avenge the death of their father. This will serve as a cleansing for the family and Argos. Their libations could signify the act of rebirth, through seeking their vengeance upon Clytemnestra and Aegisthus.

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