Seneca's tragedies rework those of all three of the Athenian tragic playwrights whose work has survived. Probably meant to be recited at elite gatherings, they differ from the Greek versions in their long declamatory, narrative accounts of action, their obtrusive moralising, and their bombastic rhetoric. They dwell on detailed accounts of horrible deeds and contain long reflective soliloquies . Though the gods rarely appear in these plays, ghosts and witches abound. Senecan tragedies explore ideas of revenge , the occult, the supernatural, suicide, blood and gore. The Renaissance scholar Julius Caesar Scaliger (1484–1558), who knew both Latin and Greek, preferred Seneca to Euripides.