This essay is an attempt to make out some peculiarities of Elot's plays，comparing
them with the Greek tragedies on which they are based. 1t is impossible，however，to
deal with every aspect now，so my present study is limited to the theme found in common in his plays and the Greek tragedies.
The same theme can be found in The Family Reunion and The Elder Statesmω1，though they are based on the different originals-on Aeschylus's The Eumenides and Sophocles's Oedipus at Colonus respectively. In The Eumenides Furies pursue the sin of matricide of the hero、while in Oediρus at Colonus the hero's sin in the past is expressed in the form of his present misery. Eliot may be said to have derived his theme of sin or expurgation of sin from these Greek tragedies and have developed it
in his plays above mentioned; in The Family Reunion the sin inherited in the family
as in case of Orestes is revealed，and in The Elder Statesman the hero， after confronting his past sin，is saved from it through the love of his daughter just as Oedipus led by Antigone. Now，what are the differences of his treatment of the theme? One is in his method of development of the theme. He expressed sin not as a deed ractically done as in the Greek tragedies but as a state of consciousness and employed psychology as a means to express it. Why? He found psychology of great utility in that it revived truths about
human nature long since known to Christianity and before it to Greek tragedians but mostly forgotten and ignored by the modern believers in optimistic humanism and in that it put them into a from and a language understandable by modern people. It was ‘the truths mostly forgotten and ignorεd' that he found in the Greek tragedies and tried to express in his plays against the general tendency of the modern time in order to show a way out of its futility and despair，and psychology was the mighty weapon. He was aware，however，that psychology is not satisfactory. He knew sin is not merely a psychological matter but in itself a religious problem. Hence he described it not only as uneasiness or the feelig of seperation or solitude but as something in need of
expurgation. Another difference lies in his way of solution or expurgation of sin. The famous Orestes Trial in The Eumenides can be said to be indicative of the victory of reason or merciful wisdom over the curse of bloodshed having been repeated since the murder of Agamennon; on the other hand， Sophocles showed a kind of relief in Oedipus by ascribing the responsibility to gods or fate. In Eliot's plays sin lies in the hero's mind deeper than can be overcome by reason or wisdom. Eliot rejected Sophocles's way，too，because he knew sin cannot be anything but man's responsibility. His heroes take up another way to inquire into and confront their own sin instead of making their escape from it， and find themselves on the way of expurgation when they have acknowledged it lurking in themselves. These pecuriarities his plays contain come from the fact that he was a Christian thinker-not a man who merely apply the Christian theory to his work，but a man，as defined in his essay The ‘Pansees' of Pascal，‘who is trying consciously and conscientiously
to explain to himself the sequence which culminates in faith， rather than the
public apologist，and who proceeds by rejection and elimination.'