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This series provides individual textbooks on early Greek poetry, on Greek drama, on philosophy, history and oratory, and on the literature of the Hellenistic period and of the Empire. A chapter on books and readers in the Greek world concludes Part 4. Each part has its own appendix of authors and works, a list of works cited, and an index.
When Murray, following England's example, printed the iambic trimeters before the anapaests in what was to become the standard text, and so presented generations of students with two incomplete prologues (imposing on the nonconformist much page-turning and mental gymnastics) he was simply reflecting the almost unanimous consensus of European scholarship. Even since Musgrave in 1762 expressed doubts about the anapaests and suggested that two and a half lines cited by Aelian (Hist. Anim. VII. 39) from ‘Euripides’ Iphigenia' came from a genuine, lost prologue, the great figures of European scholarship had wrestled with the problem in languages ancient and modern. Musgrave's championship of the Aelian fragment as part of a lost prologue was soon (for obvious reasons) abandoned, but his attack on the form of the traditional opening was pressed home by other scholars with new and sharper weapons. Explanations varied (two editions, two separate plays, a manuscript left unfinished by Euripides and completed by his son) as did tastes (some saw Euripides' hand in the trimeters and some in the anapaests) but agreement was almost universal that the prologue in its traditional form could not be Euripidean, that the same man could not have written both anapaests and iambics to run in their present sequence.
Since Murray's text was published, this point of view has been reaffirmed (with some new arguments and a judicious pruning of the old) by two acute and learned critics, D. L. Page and E. Fraenkel.