Aristotle defined Oedipus Rex by Sophocles as the perfect tragedy. In this tragedy, King Oedipus has to face a hamartia, which is the tragic hero’s downfall due to his tragic flaws. King Oedipus plays an important role in the concept of fate. Oedipus falls form his status from being a powerful noble king by not following his fate, his overbearing pride, and his assault that makes him a disgrace towards others. Although, Oedipus is considered a classic Greek tragic hero, he has several tragic flaws that lead to his downfalls such as, his arrogance, fate, and hybris. However, others may say that there are no distinguishable flaws revealed. People may think this because Sophocles does not specifically make notice to the flaws that Oedipus has. You have to be able to comprehend what is going on in order to point out his tragic flaws. Although, Oedipus appears to have many flaws mainly his arrogance, fate, and hybris. An element that makes up Oedipus’ personality that leads to his horrific downfall is arrogance. During Oedipus’s conversation with Tiresias Oedipus says, “Much as you want. Your words are nothing-frutile.” (Sophocles, pg278) This quote shows that Oedipus believes that no one is better than him. Throughout the rest of the conversation, Tiresias is treated with such disrespect from Oedipus. Oedipus imagines that Tiresias has no feelings and is ignorant to the city. However it is clear that Tiresias told Oedipus the truth about the murder as if he were trying to help him open his eyes from Oedipus’s blindness but the arrogance came out in him and spoke for him instead of his mind. Oedipus’ arrogance also leads to the dangerous act of his fate. The Gods predetermined Oedipus’ life. At the time of his birth he was prophesied that he would kill his father and marry his mother. In order for him to avoid the dreadful situation, he was guided to follow his fate. As a baby, his parents learned of his destiny and gave him to a shepherd to be killed. Since he had to carry out the destiny, however Oedipus survived and was adopted by the king and queen of Corinth. Unaware that those were not his real parents, Oedipus learned about his destiny and thought he would be able to change it by leaving Corinth. Unfortunately his prophecy, as warned by the Oracle at Delphi, was absolute, and would come true. When Oedipus found out that he was the son raised by Polybus, he was in fear of his mother knowing that she was still alive because she is a dreadful prophecy, and stranger that was sent by the gods. “Apollo told me once-it is my fate- I must make love with my own mother, shed my father’s blood with my own hands. So for years I’ve given Corinth a wide berth, but it’s been my good fortune to.” (Sophocles pg304) This shows that Oedipus was in fear of his parents and it is his fate to do as Apollo had mentioned. But before any of this had happened,
Oedipus Rex: Question 1
Oedipus Rex is considered one of the greatest tragic plays to come from any of the ancient Greek playwrights as its lessons mirror societal troubles of the era. It projects certain cultural values and morals onto the Athenian audience of the time through many different tragic conventions. Sophocles, the writer, was born near Athens between 497 and 495 BC and is considered a conservative as all his plays supported the idea of a polytheistic society and that we should not…
The tragedy of Oedipus the King is a classic representation of irony in a Greek play. Oedipus, king of Thebes emerges as a powerful ruler after solving the riddle of the Sphinx and is initially regarded as a concerned leader. The story of Oedipus Rex Centers around what caused the events before the play begins and the tragedy of what happens after Oedipus opens his eyes to the truth.
The exposition of Sophocles' Oedipus Rex occurs seamlessly. At the beginning of the play, we learn…
English Literature: 2
02 October 2014
Sometimes, we as human beings, are unable to see the most apparent truths. Sometimes, even the blind can see more than the sighted. Sophocles demonstrates this in his famous play, Oedipus Rex.
Oedipus, whose name means “swollen foot” is cursed from birth. His parents receive a prophecy that states that Oedipus will grow up to kill his father so they leave him in a mountain to die. However, Oedipus is saved by a shepherd. Furthermore, the…
Survey of Dramatic Literature
September 10, 2014
In 420 B.C., Sophocles wrote his rendition of Oedipus Rex. Oedipus Rex is the story of the son of the King and Queen of Thebes. The theme of fate plays a monstrous role in this entire play. Throughout time, the idea of fate and how it affects people’s decisions. While the Greeks wholeheartedly believed in the idea of fate, nowadays fate is an after-thought. By taking a look at the circumstances, one…
necessarily need to come out. Oedipus Rex is a tragedy where
finding out the truth does nothing but harm everything in its path. Although a cure to the plague
is found, the consequences of the truth that Oedipus and the people around him have to deal with
turn the story into a tragedy. In Oedipus Rex by Sophocles, a reader can learn that sometimes the
truth is better untold through Teiresias’ words to Oedipus when Oedipus asks him about the
Oedipus Rex the Blind King
Sophocles is one of the few Greek Tragedians whose plays have survived to this day. One of his most famous works is, Oedipus Rex. Oedipus Rex is a play about the King of Thebes, who needs to save his kingdom from a deathly plague. The only way to do so is to solve the murder of the late King Laios. However, when Oedipus was young he was cursed with a prophecy that said he was doomed to kill his father and marry his mother. While solving the murder Oedipus realizes the…
Oedipus Rex by Sophocles
1 - Oedipus is abandoned after his father, King Laius, hears a prophecy that he is to kill his father and marry his mother, Queen Jocasta. Oedipus is adopted and later hears the same prophecy, and goes in search of the truth. Along the way he gets in a fight with a man and kills him, not knowing it is his father. He then solves a riddle from the Sphinx which has been terrorizing a kingdom. In return, the kingdom gives him their queen's hand in marriage, who is his biological…
main character Oedipus comes to discover the inescapability of fate enduring
obstacles which lead him back to his destiny.
After fleeing Corinth in fear of the prophecy's statement that Oedipus's fate would be
to marry his mother and kill his father, Oedipus killed a group of men in self defense at a
crossroad. Not long after, he arrived to Thebes. With the king being recently murdered, the
townspeople looked to Oedipus for a sense of guidance. Also having defeated the sphinx,
Oedipus was awarded the royal throne and the queen as his wife…
The Decline of Oedipus in Oedipus Rex
Oedipus began Oedipus Rex as a king, only to end the tale as a blinded beggar. Oedipus' fall from his kingly status was not by accident or because of some other person. Oedipus is the only one that can be blamed for his misfortune. Oedipus' character traits are shown most clearly during his spiraling downfall, thinking he is "a simple man, who knows nothing", yet knowing more than he realizes by the end of the story.
Oedipus Rex as a Historical Construct
The tale of Oedipus Rex is one that is mind-boggling. It is quite perplexing for two reasons: on one hand, knowing the Greeks so strongly believed in the fates and prophecies, the course of events in Oedipus’ life seems to be a probable perception; yet on the other hand, that course of events also seems too-well put together, tragically speaking, to be true.
First off, it is very likely that Laius and Jocasta, as king and queen of Thebes, would have had…