The Bacchae

Euripides
  • Study Guide
Quotes

Important Quotes Explained

Quotes Important Quotes Explained

Dionysus: Follow, and I shall go as your escort and protector, though another shall bring you back

Pentheus: Yes, my mother

Dionysus: as a sight for all.

Pentheus: It is for this that I come.

Dionysus: You will be carried here

Pentheus: That is pampering me

Dionysus: In your mother's arms.

Pentheus: And you will make me really spoiled!

Dionysus: Yes, spoiled-in a special way.

This quick exchange of half-lines between the two primary characters of the play in scene four accelerates the drama and emotional tension of the previous three scenes and represents a climax in its own right. Dionysus here is sketching out Pentheus's fate in the next scene when "another shall bring you back." The god further says that Pentheus's mother will bring him back "as a sight for all" and she does indeed bring his head back as a hunting trophy. The last two lines are a play on the word 'spoil,' a word rooted in the verb "to break up" and thus an ironic allusion to Pentheus's dismemberment. In this short exchange, we can clearly see Pentheus completely under Dionysus's sway, following his every instruction. We also notice Pentheus's complete egoism in the way he interprets all of Dionysus's words in the manner that most favors him, and thus makes himself absurd to the audience, which understands full-well Dionysus's plans.