Philomela`s story, based on a Greek myth, has inspired many western writers such as Sohpocles, Aristophanes, Chaucer, Dante, Gower, Gascoigne and Shakespeare. This article compares and contrasts various male-authored versions of Philomela`s story and then focuses on a dramatic representation of Philomela, a re-working by a woman dramatist in the twentieth century. The Philomela story is simple, but omnipresent in history in the same way that pain is omnipresent. Her story has been retold throughout Western literature where Philomela has become one of the paradigmatic victims of sexual violence. The name, Philomela, thus represents the diverse pain that women in Western literature have suffered from abduction, adultery, exploitation, incarceration, incest, infanticide, mutilation and rape. Philomela`s pain is as `universal` as it is `omnipresent` and `diverse,` as much in literature as in reality. The image of Philomela in ancient Greece, in medieval and Elizabethan times is a naive and submissive victim, who laments her ravishment and her cut-out tongue. In Ovid`s Metamorphoses Philomela avenges herself on male violence on her body. However, in medieval times Philomela and her sister, Procne, are described as not able to be revenged upon the perpetrator, but Tereus`s carnal desire is condemned in the moral context. In Elizabethan times, Philomel is used as a political agent, who is the scapegoat of sexual politics of patriarchal domination. If a woman is an unwilling victim and rejects her role, the penalties are high. The Love of the Nightingale, dramatized by a woman playwright in the twentieth century, however, portrays Philomel and Procne as strong-willed women who break their silence by wielding whatever they can grab. Both in fiction and reality, there have been brave women who have overcome their oppression like Philomel.