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The Wooing Of Ariadne Essay, Research Paper


The theme of the story is that you should have zest and your own attitude towards life. Also that you should never give up until all is lost.



We are first introduced to our main characters, Marco and Ariadne, in the first scene in the Legion Hall on Laramie Street. This is where Marco develops his fondness of Ariadne.


Shortly after Marco sights his new found love he quickly introduces himself and asks Ariadne to dance with him. She rejects his proposal and this starts off the conflict between the two characters. Even after loud rejections, insults and being punched in the face, Marco is still determined to win Ariadne’s affection. Marco meets with her father to learn more about his mystery woman but the old man discourages him saying that she cannot cook, is bad tempered, violent, and stubborn. Marco presses on inside the grocery store trying to get Ariadne to come and meet him. She refuses yet again but Marco retreats to the street where he begins to call out her name. He is met with a shower of objects from the window thrown out by Ariadne. Marco returns to the store that evening to find that she is waiting for him at the church with Father Malas, Uncle Paul and Mr. Langos, her father. Once inside Marco states his love for Ariadne only to be threatened and told to stay away from her by the three men. Marco realizes that he cannot make them understand and starts for the door after a fiery speech of his passion for Ariadne.


The high point comes just after Marco heads for the door heart broken that he failed. Suddenly, obviously impressed with Marco’s motivation and genuine love, Ariadne calls to him that he may call on her the next day.


Uncle Paul, Father Malas and Mr. Langos bicker in the background as Marco leaves the church exhilarated that he has finally won her over.



The mighty Spartan, Marco Palamas, is the protagonist of the story. The first impression of him is that he is a male chauvinist pig but later in the tale we learn that he really is a true romantic that simply says what he feels. He thinks very highly of himself and is proud of his origin of Southern Greece.


Ariadne Langos brings the conflict into the short story with her numerous rejections of Marco. She is a tall, dark eyed, woman in her early thirties who is also bad tempered, stubborn, and spoiled. The difference between her and Marco is that she hides her feeling whereas Marco says everything he feels.

Minor Characters:

Mr. Langos is the father of Ariadne and runs a small grocery store. He is a small old man with bushy white hair and plays a small role in the story.


The story is based in Chicago at an unknown period probably in the 50’s – late 60’s. It takes place over the space of a few days.


The author, Harry Petrakis, uses basic vocabulary that is easy to follow and understand. He also shows irony and often time’s visual slapstick to make points.

Method of narration:

The story is written in first person point of view.

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