The Oresteia: Who is Who

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House of Atreus family tree
Graphic by Isabel Siragusa.

The Oresteia: Who is Who

In case you’re a little rusty on your Aeschylus, here’s a cheat sheet. Check out the family tree (above) to see who is related, married, or having an affair with whom. Below, you’ll find some footnotes—compiled by Artistic Producer LeeAnn Dowd—offering context for the world of The Oresteia (#nospoilers).

Atreus & Thyestes: Twin brothers who battled for the throne of Mycenae. Along the way, Atreus tricked Thyestes into eating his own children.

Aegisthus: Son of Thyestes and Thyestes’ daughter Pelopia. He was raised by, and ultimately murders, Atreus. 

Helen: Sister to Clytemnestra and wife of Menelaus. The most beautiful woman in the world. Her abduction was the cause of the Trojan War.

Menelaus: Younger brother of Agamemnon, who helped his brother take the throne from Thyestes following their father’s murder, and also beat him out when drawing straws for Helen’s hand.

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