Sophocles,〖H. C., viii, 209.〗 the tragedian who represents the purest type of the classical Greek, was in his teens when the Battle of Salamis was won. Beautiful in person and clear sighted in intellect, he was the first to use the new Greek art in the theater. For he introduced scene painting. Heretofore even Æschylus had been content with only the altar in the orchestra and a few statues of gods on the outer edge away from the audience. Sophocles now erected a scene building, the front of which showed to the audience the façade of a temple or palace, pierced by a single door. The two side entrances were retained. Æschylus adopted the innovation readily, and thus we find the scenery of the “Agamemnon,” simple as it is, far advanced from the earlier conditions. Sophocles also enlarged the chorus from twelve to fifteen singers, securing greater volume of tone and variety of motion and gesture. But from this time onward we note a steady diminution of the choral parts and the greater prominence of the actors, whose number Sophocles increased to three.

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