Sketch the character of Clytemnestra

Question: Sketch the character of Clytemnestra.


As a dramatist, Aeschylus’s greatness lies in creating life-like characters. Clytemnestra is one of them. She was a beautiful portrayal of a woman gaining the characteristic features of a dynamic male figure. Her character is different from the other heroine of Greek tragedy. Her character is illustrated below with the reference of Aeschylus’ tragedy “Agamemnon.”

Royal birth

Clytemnestra was the daughter of Leda and Tyndoreos, the king of Sparta. By birth, she was a royal birth. she was the wife of Agamemnon who was the king of Argos. From this perspective, we can say that Clytemnestra was a royal birth woman.

The representative of heroic power of the age

In the classical Greek Tragedy, “Agamemnon” is about the assassination of Agamemnon by her own wife. Here, we see that after a long war of Troy that lasted nearly 10 years, Agamemnon returned to his own kingdom.  In his long absence, Clytemnestra has ruled the kingdom. As a woman, she had been ruled the entire kingdom it was a sign of Clytemnestra’s heroic power. In Aeschylus’s tragedy Agamemnon, the character of Clytemnestra is portrayed as a strong-willed woman. She was the representative of woman power of the age. Critics have often compared Clytemnestra with lady Macbeth. But this comparison is not apt to Clytemnestra had no lament what she had done.

Woman of action

Clytemnestra was an extremely tongue-tied woman. In the tragedy, we never see that Clytemnestra does not disclose her plan to Aegisthus. She was for all practical purposes, self-sufficient. For ten years she managed the affairs of the state during her husband’s absence. She managed the state well even the chorus could not comment upon her administration. So, it is proved that Clytemnestra was a woman in action.

Suspicious mind

In the tragedy “Agamemnon” we have noticed Clytemnestra’s suspicious mind. She was a very cunning woman. She does not discuss her plan even her lover is not known much about her plan. Only the audience knows about her plan to murder Agamemnon. Her words are plain but her meaning was hidden from all those around her.

Illicit sensetional relation with Aegisthus

Aegisthus was the cousin brother of Agamemnon and son of Thyestes who has made a curse on Atreus’s generation. Clytemnestra had maintained a secret relation with Aegisthus. A long absence of her husband, she has fallen in love with Aegisthus but this matter of illegal relation is remained secret before the death of Agamemnon. After the death of Agamemnon, Clytemnestra was declared in front of the people of her kingdom that Agamemnon died.  And she would rule the kingdom with Aegisthus.

Excellence in the art of wickedness

Clytemnestra represents the best kind of excellence in the art of wickedness. She is one of the greatest artful pretenders of the human history of oratory. She appears as the most artful in her speech and gestures. She was a wonderful lady, a mastermind, a terrible conspirator, a crafty pretender, and highly skillful in designing her speech.


In fine, we can terminate that Clytemnestra was a single-handed plot maker of the murderer of Agamemnon and the Troy princess Cassandra. Clytemnestra is probably the most fully drawn among the characters in the Oresteia Trilogy. She was the best heroine of her heroic mode.

Ruhul Huda
Ruhul Huda

You can call me Mr. Huda. I am a researcher and doing this work for years. I like to learn everywhere. So, feel free to share your experience with me.

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