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Euripides (c. 480–406 BCE) was one of the three great tragedians of classical Athens, along with Aeschylus and Sophocles.
He is believed to have written over ninety plays, eighteen of which have survived (it is now widely believed that a nineteenth, Rhesus, was written by someone else). Fragments, some of them substantial, of most of the other plays also survive. More of his plays have survived than those of Aeschylus and Sophocles together, partly because of the chance preservation of a manuscript that was probably part of a complete collection of his works.
Euripides is known primarily for having reshaped the formal structure of traditional Attic tragedy by showing strong women characters and smart slaves, and by satirizing many heroes of Greek
His mother's name was Cleito, and his father's either Mnesarchus or Mnesarchides. Evidence suggests that Euripides' family was financially well off. He had a wife named Melito, and together they had three sons. It is rumored that he also had a daughter, but she was killed after a rabid dog attacked her. Some call this rumor a joke made by Aristophanes, a comic writer who often poked fun at Euripides. However, many historians fail to see the humor in it, and believe that the story is indeed true.
The record of Euripides' public life, other than his involvement in dramatic competitions, is almost non-existent. It has been said that he travelled to Syracuse, Sicily, that he engaged in various public or political activities during his lifetime, and that he left Athens at the invitation of king Archelaus II and stayed with him in Macedonia after 408 BCE; there is, however, no historical evidence for any of these.