Alcestis

Alcestis is a tragedy written by Euripides, represented at the Dionysias in 438 BC with a happy ending and this aspect, besides the fact that the character of Heracles presents markedly comic traits, suggests that it was represented in place of a satirical drama. It is a particular tragedy under many other aspects: typical motifs of the popular fairy tale appear in it, such as the wife who offers her life in exchange for that of her husband and the hero’s struggle to wrest the woman from death. However, an intimate tragic emotion flows from the tender figure of the protagonist, when she is about to leave life. The mystery of Alcestis  by Marguerite Yourcenar “the favor of gods brings misfortune to mortals”. With “The Mystery of Alcestis” Marguerite Yourcenar recovers loyalty to the Greek model, but changes its setting. The myth becomes gentrified and the attention of the writer focuses on deepening the problematic relationship between the two spouses, marked by misunderstandings and tensions that dissolve with Admeto’s awareness. The myth of Alcestis shows us two themes present in the unconscious and in the consciences: the idea of ​​immortality combined with that of a savior god triumphant over death and the idea of ​​the salvation of a creature attained through the sacrifice of another.