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This book opens up a neglected chapter in the reception of Athenian drama, especially comedy; and it gives stage-center to a particularly attractive and entertaining series of vase-paintings, hitherto regarded as marginal curiosities. These are the so-called “phlyax” vases; nearly all painted in the Greek cities of South Italy in the period 400-300 BC. Up till now, they have been taken to reflect some kind of folk theatre, but Oliver Taplin, promoted by three new vases recently published, argues that many reflect Athenian comedy of the sort represent by Aristophanes. This bold thesis opens up questions of the relation of tragedy as well as comedy to vase painting, the cultural climate of South Italy, and the potential of Athenian drama as an export. It also enriches appreciation of many key aspects of Aristophanic comedy; its metatheatre and self-reference; its use of stage action and stage props; it unabashed indecency; and its polarized relationship, even rivalry, with tragedy. The book contains 47 photographs of vase-paintings, many of which have only come to light in the last twenty years, with some being published here for the first time outside specialist journals.