Native name Φιλοκλῆς
Born 5th century BC
Died 5th century BC
Occupation Poet
Parent(s) Philopatho (mother)

Philocles (Greek: Φιλοκλῆς), was an Athenian tragic poet during the 5th century BCE. Through his mother, Philopatho (Greek: Φιλοπαθώ), he had three famous uncles: Aeschylus, the famous poet, Cynaegirus, hero of the battle of Marathon, and Ameinias, hero of the battle of Salamis. Philocles is best known for winning first prize in the competition against Sophocles' Oedipus Rex.[1][2] Philocles also wrote a play on the subject of Tereus, which was parodied in Aristophanes' The Birds along with Sophocles' treatment of the same subject.[3] A scholiast has noted that Philocles' Tereus was part of his Pandionis tetralogy.[3] An extant fragment shows that Philocles wrote a play covering the story of Hermione, Neoptolemus and Orestes, a story also addressed by Euripides in his play Andromache and by Sophocles in his Hermione.[4] In Pholocles' version of the Hermione myth, Hermione is betrothed to Neoptolemus by her father Menelaus while she is pregnant with Orestes' child.[4] Philocles also wrote plays entitled Oedipus and Philoctetes.[5]


  1. Kopff, E. Christian (1997). Ancient Greek Authors. Gale. ISBN 978-0-8103-9939-6.
  2. Smith, Helaine (2005). Masterpieces of Classic Greek Drama. Greenwood. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-313-33268-5.
  3. 1 2 March, J. (2000). "Vases and Tragic Drama". In Rutter, N.K.; Sparkes, B.A. Word and Image in Ancient Greece. University of Edinburgh. pp. 121–123. ISBN 978-0-7486-1405-9.
  4. 1 2 Sommerstein, A.H., Fitzpatrick, D. & Talboy, T. (2006). Sophocles: Selected Fragmentary Plays Volume I. Aris & Phillips. p. 7. ISBN 978-0-85668-766-2.
  5. Collard, C., Cropp, M.J. & Gilbert, J. (2004). Euripides: Selected Fragmentary Plays Volume II. Aris & Phillips. pp. 113, 373. ISBN 978-0-85668-621-4.
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