Electra

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In Greek mythology, Electra (Greek: Ἠλέκτρα, Ēlektra) was an Argive princess and daughter of King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra. She and her brother Orestes plotted revenge against their mother Clytemnestra and stepfather Aegisthus for the murder of their father, Agamemnon. Electra is the main character in the Greek tragedies Electra by Sophocles and Electra by Euripides and has inspired various other works. The psychological concept of the Electra complex is also named after her.

Contents

Family

Electra's parents were King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra. Her sisters were Iphigeneia and Chrysothemis, and her brother Orestes. In the Iliad, Homer is understood to be referring to Electra in mentioning "Laodice" as a daughter of Agamemnon.[1]

The daughter of Agamemnon should not be confused with her namesake the sea-nymph Electra, the mother of the lesser goddess Iris by the Sea-Titan Thaumas.

The Murder of Agamemnon

Electra was absent from Mycenae when her father, King Agamemnon, returned from the Trojan War to be murdered by Aegisthus, Clytemnestra's lover, and/or by Clytemnestra herself. Clytemnestra had held a grudge against her husband Agamemnon for murdering their eldest daughter Iphigenia as sacrifice to Artemis or Athena (disputed). Aegisthus and Clytemnestra also killed Cassandra, Agamemnon's war prize, a prophet priestess of Troy. Eight years later Electra was brought from Athens with her brother, Orestes. (Odyssey, iii. 306; X. 542).

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