Additionally, its dramatic structure represents a shift from the conventions of Old Comedy, a trend typical of the author's career.
It was produced in the same year as the Thesmophoriazusae, another play with a focus on gender-based issues, just two years after Athens' catastrophic defeat in the Sicilian Expedition.
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Lampito goes off to spread the word of revolt, and the other women retreat behind the barred gates of the Acropolis to await the men's response.She has convened a meeting of women from various city states in Greece (there is no mention of how she managed this feat) and, very soon after confiding in her friend about her concerns for the female sex, the women begin arriving.With support from the Spartan Lampito, Lysistrata persuades the other women to withhold sexual privileges from their menfolk as a means of forcing them to end the interminable Peloponnesian War.The magistrate then arrives with some Scythian archers (the Athenian version of police constables).He reflects on the hysterical nature of women, their devotion to wine, promiscuous sex, and exotic cults (such as to Sabazius and Adonis), but above all he blames men for poor supervision of their womenfolk.A Chorus of Old Men arrives, intent on burning down the gate of the Acropolis if the women don't open up.Encumbered with heavy timbers, inconvenienced with smoke and burdened with old age, they are still making preparations to assault the gate when a Chorus of Old Women arrives, bearing pitchers of water.He has come for silver from the state treasury to buy oars for the fleet and he instructs his Scythians to begin levering open the gate.However, they are quickly overwhelmed by groups of unruly women with such unruly names as Lysistrata restores order and she allows the magistrate to question her.The Old Women complain about the difficulty they had getting the water, but they are ready for a fight in defense of their younger comrades.Threats are exchanged, water beats fire, and the Old Men are discomfited with a soaking.