Eupolis - While no complete play by Eupolis survives, we have nineteen titles and around five hundred quotes from a body of work which included three victories at the Lenaea and one at the Dionysia. This sizeable corpus is all the more impressive because Eupolis died relatively young, at some point during the Peloponnesian War. According to later historical sources, the loss of Eupolis proved such a source of grief to the Athenians that they henceforth exempted poets from military service, a proverbial tale, no doubt, built to showcase the greater truth of Eupolis' tremendous comic talent and the respect his drama commanded in the years and centuries after the playwright's premature demise. If an overstatement, it's really not much of one to rate Eupolis' death among the more devastating blows that befell Athens at the close of the Classical Age.

The Taxiarchs ("The Ship-Captains," again named for the play's chorus) featured the effeminate god Dionysus serving in the Athenian navy. Such a situation has a real potential for humor, as quotations from the play attest.

For instance, the lack of good food and the harsh conditions under which the navy labored, especially in the later stages of the Peloponnesian War, would not appeal to the pampered Asian deity who in his comic persona is cowardly and weak. Here, Dionysus laments to some unnamed comrade about the difficulties of military life:

FRIEND: What! You? Dionysus? Not wearing your usual designer shirt?
(feeling the shirt) Disgusting! Has this thing ever been washed?
DIONYSUS: When it was new, it had five pounds of heavy weave, so help me . . . me!
FRIEND: Well, now it's a ton and a half of dirt.

And a little later, Dionysus grumbles:

DIONYSUS: You know what I really want: those almonds from Naxos
(I was born there!) and a bottle of that Naxious wine.

And when mess is served:

DIONYSUS: That's all to eat? An onion—
you didn't even chop it—and three pickles!

In our age, the same gimmick has been used to great effect in at least one movie, Private Benjamin in which the central character, a pampered rich girl who has joined the army and is being issued fatigues, asks "Does this come in something other than green?"

Source: Classic Drama and Theater, M. Damen