To appreciate Greek comedy, one needs to understand the function of drama in ancient Athens. Plays were performed as part of popular annual (年度的) festivals. Huge audiences would gather at these festivals to enjoy them. But the entertainment was not seen as unimportant, or just as a matter for private individuals (个人) who wished to enjoy themselves. The dramas were a contribution to society. In the plays, Athens represented (代表) itself to itself. These representations are often unflattering (贬损的).