Aristophanes and Cleon

1. What did Cleon and Aristophanes have in common?

  • They both came from same home town
  • They both sympathised with the Megarians
  • They shared a father
  • They both hated war
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2. Why was Cleon unsuccessful in prosecuting Aristophanes?

  • Aristophanes had the most expensive lawyer in Athens at the time
  • The Assembly did not like Cleon for blackmailing the Athenian citizens
  • Playwrights could not be prosecuted for what anything said in a play
  • Playwrights were paid to attack and undermine politicians like Cleon

3. What reputation did Cleon have?

  • Loud, obnoxious and easily offended.
  • Funny, confident and intelligent.
  • Quiet, shy and timid in the Assembly.
  • A coward in battle but brave at sea.

4. Why are Aristophanes' attacks on Cleon entertaining in his plays?

  • The audience knew Cleon was sitting in the front seat of the theatre
  • The audience knew Cleon was dying
  • The audience could see Cleon's family in the theatre
  • The audience knew Aristophanes would soon be arrested

5. Which of Aristophanes' plays did Cleon attempt to prosecute him over?

  • The Knights
  • The Babylonians
  • The Acharnians
  • Telephus


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