House of Gonzaga
The House of Gonzaga was an Italian princely family that ruled Mantua, in northern Italy, from 1328 to 1708. Their family includes twelve cardinals and fourteen bishops. Two Gonzaga descendants became empresses of the Holy Roman Empire, one became queen of Poland; the first members of the family of historical importance are known to have collaborated with the Guelph faction alongside the monks of the Polirone Abbey. Starting from the 12th century they became a dominant family in Mantua, growing in wealth when their allies, the Bonacolsi, defeated the traditional familiar enemy, the Casalodi. In 1328, Ludovico I Gonzaga overthrew the Bonacolsi lordship over the city with the help of the Scaliger, entered the Ghibelline party as capitano del popolo of Mantua and imperial vicar of Emperor Louis IV. Ludovico was succeeded by Guido and Ludovico II, while Feltrino, lord of Reggio until 1371, formed the cadet branch of the Gonzaga of Novellara, whose state existed until 1728. Francesco I abandoned the traditional alliance with the Visconti of Milan, in order to align their rising power with the Republic of Venice.
In 1433, Gianfrancesco I assumed the title of Marquis of Mantua with the recognition of Emperor Sigismund, while obtaining recognition from the local nobility through the marriage of his daughter Margherita to Leonello d'Este, Marquis of Ferrara in 1435. In 1530 Federico II received the title of Duke of Mantua. In 1531, the family acquired the Marquisate of Montferrat through marriage. Through maternal ancestors, the Gonzagas inherited the Imperial Byzantine ancestry of the Paleologus, an earlier ruling family of Montferrat. A cadet branch of the Mantua Gonzagas became dukes of Nevers and Rethel in France when Luigi Gonzaga, a younger son of Federico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua and Margherita Paleologa, married the heiress; the Gonzaga-Nevers came to rule Mantua again when Louis's son Charles inherited Mantua and Montferrat, triggering the War of the Mantuan Succession. Another cadet branch were first sovereign counts dukes of Guastalla, they descended from a younger son of Duke Francesco II of Mantua.
Ferrante's grandson, Ferrante II played a role in the War of the Mantuan Succession. A further cadet branch was that of Sabbioneta, founded by Gianfrancesco, son of Ludovico III. Marie Louise Gonzaga, daughter of Prince Charles Gonzaga-Nevers, was a Polish queen consort from 1645 to her death in 1667. Two daughters of the house, both named Eleanor Gonzaga, became Holy Roman Empresses, by marrying emperors Ferdinand II of Germany and Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor, respectively. From the latter Empress Eleanor, the current heirs of the Gonzaga descend. St. Aloysius Gonzaga was a member of a junior branch of this family; the House of Gonzaga is the inspiration for the play-within-the-play in Shakespeare's Hamlet. In Act 3 scene 2, they act out a play called The Murder of Gonzago. Gonzaga rule continued in Mantua until 1708 and in Guastalla until 1746. Both ruling lines became extinct, the headship of the House of Gonzaga passed to the Vescovato line, descended from Giovanni, a son of Federico I Gonzaga.
That branch, shorn of sovereign domains, is extant. Its head is Maurizio Ferrante Gonzaga; the branches of the Gonzaga family, showing marquises and dukes of Mantua in bold, dukes of Nevers and Rethel in italics and the Guastalla line to the right. Aloysius Gonzaga, SJ 1568–1591, canonized by the Catholic Church in 1726 Francesco Gonzaga Sigismondo Gonzaga Pirro Gonzaga Ercole Gonzaga Francesco Gonzaga Federico Gonzaga Giovanni Vincenzo Gonzaga Scipione Gonzaga Francesco Gonzaga Ferdinando Gonzaga, became Duke of Mantua, as Ferdinando I, in 1612 Vincenzo Gonzaga, became Duke of Mantua, as Vincenzo II, in 1626 Duchy of Mantua, a list of House of Gonzaga rulers; the Gonzaga. Lords of Mantua. London: Methuen. Marek, Miroslav. "Genealogy tree". Genealogy. EU. Giancarlo, Malacarne. "Family Tree of the Gonzaga". Albero genealogico dei Gonzaga
William Shakespeare was an English poet and actor regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's greatest dramatist. He is called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon", his extant works, including collaborations, consist of 39 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, a few other verses, some of uncertain authorship. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more than those of any other playwright. Shakespeare was raised in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire. At the age of 18, he married Anne Hathaway, with whom he had three children: Susanna and twins Hamnet and Judith. Sometime between 1585 and 1592, he began a successful career in London as an actor and part-owner of a playing company called the Lord Chamberlain's Men known as the King's Men. At age 49, he appears to have retired to Stratford. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive; such theories are criticised for failing to adequately note that few records survive of most commoners of the period.
Shakespeare produced most of his known works between 1589 and 1613. His early plays were comedies and histories and are regarded as some of the best work produced in these genres; until about 1608, he wrote tragedies, among them Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth, all considered to be among the finest works in the English language. In the last phase of his life, he collaborated with other playwrights. Many of Shakespeare's plays were published in editions of varying quality and accuracy in his lifetime. However, in 1623, two fellow actors and friends of Shakespeare's, John Heminges and Henry Condell, published a more definitive text known as the First Folio, a posthumous collected edition of Shakespeare's dramatic works that included all but two of his plays; the volume was prefaced with a poem by Ben Jonson, in which Jonson presciently hails Shakespeare in a now-famous quote as "not of an age, but for all time". Throughout the 20th and 21st centuries, Shakespeare's works have been continually adapted and rediscovered by new movements in scholarship and performance.
His plays remain popular and are studied and reinterpreted through various cultural and political contexts around the world. William Shakespeare was the son of John Shakespeare, an alderman and a successful glover from Snitterfield, Mary Arden, the daughter of an affluent landowning farmer, he was born in Stratford-upon-Avon and baptised there on 26 April 1564. His actual date of birth remains unknown, but is traditionally observed on 23 April, Saint George's Day; this date, which can be traced to a mistake made by an 18th-century scholar, has proved appealing to biographers because Shakespeare died on the same date in 1616. He was the third of eight children, the eldest surviving son. Although no attendance records for the period survive, most biographers agree that Shakespeare was educated at the King's New School in Stratford, a free school chartered in 1553, about a quarter-mile from his home. Grammar schools varied in quality during the Elizabethan era, but grammar school curricula were similar: the basic Latin text was standardised by royal decree, the school would have provided an intensive education in grammar based upon Latin classical authors.
At the age of 18, Shakespeare married 26-year-old Anne Hathaway. The consistory court of the Diocese of Worcester issued a marriage licence on 27 November 1582; the next day, two of Hathaway's neighbours posted bonds guaranteeing that no lawful claims impeded the marriage. The ceremony may have been arranged in some haste since the Worcester chancellor allowed the marriage banns to be read once instead of the usual three times, six months after the marriage Anne gave birth to a daughter, baptised 26 May 1583. Twins, son Hamnet and daughter Judith, followed two years and were baptised 2 February 1585. Hamnet died of unknown causes at the age of 11 and was buried 11 August 1596. After the birth of the twins, Shakespeare left few historical traces until he is mentioned as part of the London theatre scene in 1592; the exception is the appearance of his name in the "complaints bill" of a law case before the Queen's Bench court at Westminster dated Michaelmas Term 1588 and 9 October 1589. Scholars refer to the years between 1585 and 1592 as Shakespeare's "lost years".
Biographers attempting to account for this period have reported many apocryphal stories. Nicholas Rowe, Shakespeare's first biographer, recounted a Stratford legend that Shakespeare fled the town for London to escape prosecution for deer poaching in the estate of local squire Thomas Lucy. Shakespeare is supposed to have taken his revenge on Lucy by writing a scurrilous ballad about him. Another 18th-century story has Shakespeare starting his theatrical career minding the horses of theatre patrons in London. John Aubrey reported; some 20th-century scholars have suggested that Shakespeare may have been employed as a schoolmaster by Alexander Hoghton of Lancashire, a Catholic landowner who named a certain "William Shakeshafte" in his will. Little evidence substantiates such stories other than hearsay collected after his death, Shakeshafte was a common name in the Lancashire area, it is not known definitively when Shakespeare began writing, but contemporary allusions and records of performances show that several of
In William Shakespeare's play Hamlet, Gertrude is Hamlet's mother and Queen of Denmark. Her relationship with Hamlet is somewhat turbulent, since he resents her marrying her husband's brother Claudius after he murdered the King. Gertrude reveals no guilt in her marriage with Claudius after the recent murder of her husband, Hamlet begins to show signs of jealousy towards Claudius. According to Hamlet, she scarcely mourned her husband's death before marrying Claudius, her name may derive from Gertrude of Bavaria, Queen Consort of Denmark 1182–1197. Gertrude is first seen in Act 1 Scene 2 as she tries to cheer Hamlet over the loss of his father, begging him to stay at home rather than going back to school in Wittenberg, her worry over him continues into the second act, as she sides with King Claudius in sending Rosencrantz and Guildenstern to raise the spirits of her son. Rather than ascribing Hamlet's sudden madness to Ophelia's rejection, she believes the cause to be his father, King Hamlet's death and her quick, subsequent marriage to Claudius: "I doubt it is no other but the main.
In Act three, she eagerly listens to the report of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern on their attempt to cheer him, supports the King and Polonius' plan to watch Hamlet from a hidden vantage point as he speaks with Ophelia, with the hope that her presence will heal him. In the next act, Gertrude tells Claudius of Polonius' murder, convinced that Hamlet is mad, she shows genuine compassion and affection as she watches along with others as Ophelia sings and acts in absolute madness. At Ophelia's burial, she expresses her former hope that the young woman might have married her son: "I hoped thou shouldst have been my Hamlet's wife." When Hamlet appears and grapples with Laertes, she asks him to stop and for someone to hold him back—saying that he may be in a fit of madness now, but that will alleviate soon. At the beginning of the play, Gertrude lies more with her husband than her son. In the final scene, Gertrude notices Hamlet is tired during the fight with Laertes, offers to wipe his brow, she drinks a cup of poison intended for Hamlet by the King, against the King's wishes, dies, shouting in agony as she falls: "No, no, the drink,—O my dear Hamlet—The drink, the drink!
I am poison'd." Other characters' views of the Queen are negative. When the Ghost of her former husband appears to Hamlet, he describes her as a "seeming virtuous queen", but orders Hamlet not to confront her about it and leave her judgement to heaven. However, he expresses that his love for her was benevolent as he states that he would have held back the elements if they "visited her face too roughly". Hamlet sees her as an example of the weakness of women and hurt in his reflections of how she remarried. There have been numerous attempts to account for Gertrude's state of mind during the play, it could be argued that as she does not confess to any sins before she dies, she did not participate in her husband's murder. However, other considerations do point to Gertrude's complicity. After repeated erratic threats towards his mother to no response, Hamlet threatens to discover the true nature of Gertrude's character by setting up a mirror, at which point she projects a killer: In the 1919 essay "Hamlet and his problems" T. S. Eliot suggests that the main cause of Hamlet's internal dilemma is Gertrude's sinful behaviour.
He states, "Shakespeare's Hamlet... is a play dealing with the effect of a mother's guilt upon her son."In 1924, the social reformer Lillie Buffum Chace Wyman published a study, Gertrude of Denmark: An Interpretive Romance, an early attempt to give Gertrude's own perspective on her life and the events of the play. Wyman explicitly "interrogates the nineteenth-century cult of the self-sacrificing mother", critiquing the influence it had on interpretations of the play by both male critics and actresses playing Gertrude. In the 1940s, Ernest Jones—a psychoanalyst and Freud's biographer—developed Freud's ideas into a series of essays that culminated in his book Hamlet and Oedipus. Influenced by Jones's psychoanalytic approach, several productions have portrayed the "closet scene", where Hamlet confronts his mother in her private quarters, in a sexual light. In this reading, Hamlet is disgusted by his mother's "incestuous" relationship with Claudius while fearful of killing him, as this would clear Hamlet's path to his mother's bed.
Carolyn Heilbrun's 1957 essay "Hamlet's Mother" defends Gertrude, arguing that the text never hints that Gertrude knew of Claudius poisoning King Hamlet. This analysis has been championed by many feminist critics. Heilbrun argued that men have for centuries misinterpreted Gertrude, believing what Hamlet said about her rather than the actual text of the play. By this account, no clear evidence suggests that Gertrude is an adulteress: she is adapting to the circumstances of her husband's death for the good of the kingdom. Women were exclusively banned from appearing as actresses on the stage until 1660 and in the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods, troupes appeared that were composed of boy players. Indeed, they are famously mentioned in Hamlet, in which a group of travelling actors has left the city due to rivalry with a troupe of "little eyases". Eileen Herlie portrayed Gertrude in Laurence Olivier's 1948 Hamlet. Glenn Close played mother to Mel Gibson in the Franco Zeffirelli's 1990 Hamlet. Julie Christie appeared as Gertrude in Kenneth Branagh's 1996 Hamlet.
Despite her classical training as an actor, it was her first-ever
London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans; the City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of the London Assembly. London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, education, fashion, healthcare, professional services and development, tourism and transportation.
London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP, it is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games. London has a diverse range of people and cultures, more than 300 languages are spoken in the region, its estimated mid-2016 municipal population was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census.
The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925. London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries and sporting events; these include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world. "London" is an ancient name, attested in the first century AD in the Latinised form Londinium. Over the years, the name has attracted many mythicising explanations; the earliest attested appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written around 1136. This had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had taken over the city and named it Kaerlud.
Modern scientific analyses of the name must account for the origins of the different forms found in early sources Latin, Old English, Welsh, with reference to the known developments over time of sounds in those different languages. It is agreed; this was adapted into Latin as Londinium and borrowed into Old English, the ancestor-language of English. The toponymy of the Common Brythonic form is much debated. A prominent explanation was Richard Coates's 1998 argument that the name derived from pre-Celtic Old European *lowonida, meaning "river too wide to ford". Coates suggested that this was a name given to the part of the River Thames which flows through London. However, most work has accepted a Celtic origin for the name, recent studies have favoured an explanation along the lines of a Celtic derivative of a proto-Indo-European root *lendh-, combined with the Celtic suffix *-injo- or *-onjo-. Peter Schrijver has suggested, on these grounds, that the name meant'place that floods'; until 1889, the name "London" applied to the City of London, but since it has referred to the County of London and Greater London.
"London" is sometimes written informally as "LDN". In 1993, the remains of a Bronze Age bridge were found on the south foreshore, upstream of Vauxhall Bridge; this bridge either reached a now lost island in it. Two of those timbers were radiocarbon dated to between 1750 BC and 1285 BC. In 2010 the foundations of a large timber structure, dated to between 4800 BC and 4500 BC, were found on the Thames's south foreshore, downstream of Vauxhall Bridge; the function of the mesolithic structure is not known. Both structures are on the south bank. Although there is evidence of scattered Brythonic settlements in the area, the first major settlement was founded by the Romans about four years after the invasion
Elizabeth I of England
Elizabeth I was Queen of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death on 24 March 1603. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana or Good Queen Bess, Elizabeth was the last of the five monarchs of the House of Tudor. Elizabeth was the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, his second wife, executed two-and-a-half years after Elizabeth's birth. Anne's marriage to Henry VIII was annulled, Elizabeth was declared illegitimate, her half-brother, Edward VI, ruled until his death in 1553, bequeathing the crown to Lady Jane Grey and ignoring the claims of his two half-sisters and the Roman Catholic Mary, in spite of statute law to the contrary. Edward's will was set aside and Mary became queen, deposing Lady Jane Grey. During Mary's reign, Elizabeth was imprisoned for nearly a year on suspicion of supporting Protestant rebels. In 1558 upon Mary's death, Elizabeth succeeded her half-sister to the throne and set out to rule by good counsel, she depended on a group of trusted advisers, led by William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley.
One of her first actions as queen was the establishment of an English Protestant church, of which she became the Supreme Governor. This Elizabethan Religious Settlement was to evolve into the Church of England, it was expected that Elizabeth would produce an heir. She was succeeded by her first cousin twice removed, James VI of Scotland, she had earlier been responsible for the imprisonment and execution of James's mother, Queen of Scots. In government, Elizabeth was more moderate. One of her mottoes was "video et taceo". In religion, she was tolerant and avoided systematic persecution. After the pope declared her illegitimate in 1570 and released her subjects from obedience to her, several conspiracies threatened her life, all of which were defeated with the help of her ministers' secret service. Elizabeth was cautious in foreign affairs, manoeuvring between the major powers of Spain, she only half-heartedly supported a number of ineffective, poorly resourced military campaigns in the Netherlands and Ireland.
By the mid-1580s, England could no longer avoid war with Spain. England's defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 associated Elizabeth with one of the greatest military victories in English history; as she grew older, Elizabeth became celebrated for her virginity. A cult grew around her, celebrated in the portraits and literature of the day. Elizabeth's reign became known as the Elizabethan era; the period is famous for the flourishing of English drama, led by playwrights such as William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, for the seafaring prowess of English adventurers such as Francis Drake. Some historians depict Elizabeth as a short-tempered, sometimes indecisive ruler, who enjoyed more than her share of luck. Towards the end of her reign, a series of economic and military problems weakened her popularity. Elizabeth is acknowledged as a charismatic performer and a dogged survivor in an era when government was ramshackle and limited, when monarchs in neighbouring countries faced internal problems that jeopardised their thrones.
After the short reigns of her half-siblings, her 44 years on the throne provided welcome stability for the kingdom and helped forge a sense of national identity. Elizabeth was born at Greenwich Palace and was named after her grandmothers, Elizabeth of York and Elizabeth Howard, she was the second child of Henry VIII of England born in wedlock to survive infancy. Her mother was Anne Boleyn. At birth, Elizabeth was the heir presumptive to the throne of England, her older half-sister, had lost her position as a legitimate heir when Henry annulled his marriage to Mary's mother, Catherine of Aragon, to marry Anne, with the intent to sire a male heir and ensure the Tudor succession. She was baptised on 10 September 1533. A canopy was carried at the ceremony over the three-day old child by her uncle Viscount Rochford, Lord Hussey, Lord Thomas Howard, Lord Howard of Effingham. Elizabeth was two years and eight months old when her mother was beheaded on 19 May 1536, four months after Catherine of Aragon's death from natural causes.
Elizabeth was deprived of her place in the royal succession. Eleven days after Anne Boleyn's execution, Henry married Jane Seymour, who died shortly after the birth of their son, Edward, in 1537. From his birth, Edward was undisputed heir apparent to the throne. Elizabeth was placed in his household and carried the chrisom, or baptismal cloth, at his christening. Elizabeth's first governess, Margaret Bryan, wrote that she was "as toward a child and as gentle of conditions as I knew any in my life". Catherine Champernowne, better known by her married name of Catherine "Kat" Ashley, was appointed as Elizabeth's governess in 1537, she remained Elizabeth's friend until her death in 1565. Champernowne taught Elizabeth four languages: French, Flemish and Spanish. By the time William Grindal became her tutor in 1544, Elizabeth could write English and Italian. Under Grindal, a talented and skilful tutor, she progressed in French and Greek. After Grindal died in 1548, Elizabeth received her education under Roger Ascham, a sympathetic teacher who believed that learning should be engaging.
By the time her formal education ended in 1550, Elizabeth was one of the best educated women of her generation. At the end of her life, Elizabeth was believed to speak Welsh, Cornish and Irish in addition to the languages men
Dionysius I of Syracuse
Dionysius I or Dionysius the Elder was a Greek tyrant of Syracuse, in Sicily. He conquered several cities in Sicily and southern Italy, opposed Carthage's influence in Sicily and made Syracuse the most powerful of the Western Greek colonies, he was regarded by the ancients as an example of the worst kind of despot—cruel and vindictive. Dionysius began his working life as a clerk in a public office; because of his achievements in the war against Carthage that began in 409 BC, he was elected supreme military commander in 406 BC. In the following year he became tyrant, he was married to Aristomache, had a daughter by her, Arete. He was married at the same time to Doris of Locris, who bore him Dionysius II of Syracuse. Dionysius' rise to tyranny began when he was granted 600 mercenaries to guard his person after he staged a false attack on his own life, he managed to increase this guard to one thousand, after consolidating his power, he established himself as a tyrant. He employed a group of ancient mercenaries that most were Sileraioi.
He imposed his mercenaries on all parts of the polis community. This act made, his rule was "unconstitutional and illegitimate and could not fail to provoke rebellions among the partisans of democratic government". Dionysius' position at home was threatened as early as 403 by those philosophically opposed to tyranny. Sparta, which had in the past deposed tyrants from Corinth to Athens, did not damn Dionysius and his autocracy. In fact, according to the historian Diodorus Siculus, relations between the two were positive: When the Lacedaemonians had settled the affairs of Greece to their own taste, they dispatched Aristus, one of their distinguished men, to Syracuse, ostensibly pretending that they would overthrow the government, but in truth with intent to increase the power of the tyranny. Dionysius received the privilege of conscripting mercenaries from lands under Spartan authority; the demise of such a prominent democratic polis and the subsequent actions of Dionysius represented a recurring norm in fourth-century Greek states, thanks to the prevalence of mercenaries.
The mercenary and the tyrant went hand in hand. Aristotle wrote that some form of "guard" is needed for absolute kingship, for an elected tyrant an optimum number of professional soldiers should be employed. Too few would undermine the tyrant's power; the philosopher notes that the people of Syracuse were warned not to let Dionysius conscript too many "guards" during his regime. He fought a war with Carthage from 397 BC to 392 BC with mixed success, he carried on an expedition against Rhegium, capturing it and attacking its allied cities in Magna Graecia. In one campaign, in which he was joined by the Lucanians, he devastated the territories of Thurii and Croton in an attempt to defend Locri. After a protracted siege, he sold the inhabitants as slaves, he pillaged the temple of Caere on the Etruscan coast. In the Adriatic, to facilitate trade, Dionysius founded Ancona and Issa. After him, the Adriatic became a sea of Syracuse. In the Corinthian War, he joined the side of the Spartans and assisted them with mercenaries and ships.
In 385 BC, Alcetas of Epirus was a refugee in Dionysius' court. Dionysius wanted a friendly monarch in Epirus, so he sent 2,000 Greek hoplites and 500 suits of Greek armour to help the Illyrians under Bardyllis in attacking the Molossians of Epirus, they ravaged the region and killed 15,000 Molossians, Alcetas regained his throne. He joined the Illyrians in an attempt to plunder the temple of Delphi. Sparta intervened under Agesilaus and with aid from Thessaly and the Molossians themselves, the Spartans expelled the Illyrians. According to some sources, after gaining a prize for one of his tragedies, “The Ransom of Hector”, at a competition at the Lenaia festival at Athens,he was so elated that he drank himself to death. According to others, he was poisoned by his physicians at the instigation of his son, Dionysius the Younger, who succeeded him as ruler of Syracuse. Others report that he died of natural causes shortly after learning of his play's victory in 367 BC; the third theory suggests that the company, of which he was a member, had taken revenge on his earlier purges and taxation imposed upon them, in an attempt to raise money for the war with Carthage.
His life was written by Philistus. Like Pisistratus, tyrant of Athens, Dionysius was fond of having literary men about him, such as the historian Philistus, the poet Philoxenus, the philosopher Plato, but treated them in a most arbitrary manner. Diodorus Siculus relates in his Bibliotheca historica that Dionysius once had Philoxenus arrested and sent to the quarries for voicing a bad opinion about his poetry; the next day, he released Philoxenus because of his friends' requests, brought the poet before him for another poetry reading. Dionysius read the audience applauded; when he asked Philoxenus how he liked it, the poet turned to the guards and said "take me back to the quarries." Plutarch relates a version of this st