The Babylonians is the first political comedy and probably the second work at all by the Greek poet Aristophanes . Their publication goes back to the Dionysia of 426 BC. BC , on which Kallistratos performed them. It was the first work by Aristophanes to be awarded first prize after “ Die Schmausbrüder ” won second place last year. Today only a few excerpts remain.
With “Die Babylonier” Aristophanes caused a tangible excitement. In the choir, the cities of the Attic League are symbolized as hard-working slaves at the hand mill of the military leader Kleon , in front of the eyes of the ambassadors from these very places. These always come at the time of such theatrical performances by Athens to tribute to pay. Aristophanes satirically criticizes the demagoguery of Kleon as well as the imperialism of Athens and makes fun of the expensive, elected councilors, which brings him an inconsequential complaint by Kleon for insulting and slandering the polis .