This chapter examines some of the textual moves employed by Euripides that have the effect of suspending or undercutting the Greek gods' anthropomorphism. It considers how the universal forces, which in Euripides appear to be synonyms or substitutions for the traditional gods and are also indifferent, cosmic principles, can be understood as divine entities and objects of cult. It also explores how these universal forces' specific relationship to the traditional gods can be described. It shows that the conflation of a divine figure with a cosmic force gives rise to an impersonal principle, “Necessity,” the realm of which fially absorbs the mythological figures, Zeus, Thanatos (the personifid name of death), and Charon (the bogeyman) with their dramatic interventions.
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