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PRATINAS

The following essay was originally published in Manual of Greek Literature from the Earliest Authentic Periods to the Close of the Byzantine Era. Charles Anthon. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1853. p. 176.

PRATINAS, one of the early tragic poets at Athens, was a native of Phlius, and therefore by birth a Dorian. It is not stated at what time he went to Athens, but he was older than Aeschylus, and younger than Chœrilus, with both of whom he competed for the prize about B.C. 500. The step in the progress of the art which was ascribed to Pratinas was the separation of the satyric from the tragic drama. His plays were much esteemed. Pratinas also ranked high among the lyric as well as among the dramatic poets of the day. He cultivated two species of lyric poetry, the hyporcheme and the dithyramb, of which the former was closely related to the satyric drama by the jocular character which it often assumed, the latter by its ancient choruses of satyrs. Pratinas may, perhaps, be considered to have shared with his contemporary Lasus the honor of founding the Athenian school of dithyrambic poetry.

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