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(mĭnăn`dər), 342?–291? B.C., Greek poet, the most famous writer of New Comedy. He wrote ingenious plays using the love plot as his theme; his style is elegant and elaborate and his characters are highly developed. Although original texts of his plays only came to light beginning in 1906, many fragments of his plays survive; The Curmudgeon, discovered in Cairo in 1957, is Menander's only complete play now extant (tr. by Gilbert Highet, 1959). Seven of his plays were adapted by PlautusPlautus
(Titus Maccius Plautus) , c.254–184 B.C., Roman writer of comedies, b. Umbria. His plays, adapted from those of Greek New Comedy, are popular and vigorous representations of middle-class and lower-class life.
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 and TerenceTerence
(Publius Terentius Afer) , b. c.185 or c.195 B.C., d. c.159 B.C., Roman writer of comedies, b. Carthage. As a boy he was a slave of Terentius Lucanus, a Roman senator, who brought him to Rome, educated him, and gave him his freedom.
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See studies by T. B. L. Webster (1960, 1974, 1975), A. W. Gomme and F. H. Sandbach (1973).



Born circa 343 B.C.; died circa 291 B.C. Ancient Greek dramatist; a founder of the Greek New Comedy.

Menander belonged to the well-to-do elite of Athenian society. In his plays he focused on everyday life, especially family conflicts. His humanism is revealed in his defense of women and of children’s rights, his exposure of the seamy side of everyday life, and his sympathy for slaves. The names of Menander’s heroes have become epithets. Classical critics praised him highly as a stylist. The New Greek Comedy influenced Roman drama and, consequently, European drama primarily through Menander’s plays.


Menandri quae supersunt, parts 1-2. Edited by A. Koerte and A. Thier-felder. Leipzig, 1957-59.
In Russian translation:
Nenavistnik. Translation and introduction by A. A. Takho-Godi. In the collection Pisatel’ i zhizn’ [Moscow] 1963.
Komedii. Moscow, 1964.


Tronskii, I. M. Istoriia antichnoi literatury, 3rd ed. Leningrad, 1957.
Istoriia grecheskoi literatury, vol. 3. Edited by S. I. Sobolevskii et al. Moscow, 1960.
Webster, T. B. L. Studies in Menander. Manchester, 1960.
Durham, D. B. The Vocabulary of Menander. Amsterdam, 1969.


1. ?160 bc--?120 bc, Greek king of the Punjab. A Buddhist convert, he reigned over much of NW India
2. ?342--?292 bc, Greek comic dramatist. The Dyskolos is his only complete extant comedy but others survive in adaptations by Terence and Plautus
References in periodicals archive ?
Menander, a king of Indo-Greek line, ruled north western India.
Caption: 10a and b Menander i drachm (2nd century BC) prototype: Obv.
In the bazaars of Lahore as well as the Punjab after Menander the gold coins stamped with the portrait of the next Greek ruler, Philoxenus Anicetus, became common.
Tenders are invited for Work shall generally consist of approximately 6,508 CY Channel Excavation, 134 Stations Slough and Menander Removal, 197 Stations Leveling Spoil Banks, 275 Tons Class E Rip Rap, 685 LF CMP, Tile Outlet and Surface Drain Replacement, and all incidentals required to complete the project.
In Menander's comedy Epitrepontes, Pamphile has been abandoned by her husband Charisios.
This volume collects and presents some of the most important contributions of its author, Andre Hurst, to the study of the Athenian comic poet Menander. All but one of the volume's nine papers have already appeared in print (chapters 2-9), but their collected publication here is very welcome.
The primary sources for our study of Phoenicia have traditionally been Josephus and Menander of Ephesus (who quote extinct "Annals of Tyre"), the Old Testament, and the Greek and Roman historians Herodotus, Xenophon, Diodorus Siculus, Arrian, Eusebius of Caesarea, and Philo of Byblos.
In addition to essays on each of the major comic playwrights (Aristophanes, Menander, Plautus, and Terence), it includes chapters on the origins of comedy in both Greece and Rome; performance; comedy's responses to tragedy, law, philosophy, politics, and religion; meter, music, language, and style; comic authors whose works survive only in fragments (the appendices are catalogues of recent papyrus finds and names of lost authors); the farcical genre called mime; and the reception of comedy in antiquity, including textual transmission, commentaries, and the influence of comedy on both literature and the visual arts.
For instance, guidelines for appropriate conduct in ceremonies occurring in the later Roman and Byzantine periods, as reflected in Menander (c.
The Greek historian Menander tersely proclaimed: The strong take what they can, the weak must give what they must.
Some of the portraits on view are of known individuals, such as the comic playwright Menander, while the identities of others are now lost to time.
El ultimo articulo del apartado dedicado a la comedia corresponde a Maria de Fatima Silva (University of Coimbra) y se titula The Rhetorical agon as Dramatic Condiment in the Epitrepontes of Menander. Este estudio esta dedicado a Menandro y la comedia nueva.