Oedipus

~Oedipus~
Many times humans do things that contradict another thing they do. An example of this is one thing may be good but also bad at the same time. A person who has done this more then once is Oedipus in the writer Sophocles plays. Sophocles uses imagery like light verses darkness, knowledge verses ignorance and sight verses blindness.
Oedipus is very knowledgeable during the play and at some times still extremely ignorant. He doesnt always put pieces together. When they are right in front of him. Many people in the play call him ignorant when he still believes that he is knowledgeable. Tiresias says All ignorant! And I refuse to link my utterance with a downfall such as yours (19). In this quote Tiresias means that Oedipus is ignorant even though he acts like he knows everything. Oedipus does not know what Tiresias knows and that is that the curse, which stated the Oedipus would marry his mother, has come true. Tiresias can see what will happen when Oedipus finds out that Jocasta is really his mother and wants to prevent that from happening. When Tiresias does not tell Oedipus the information he seeks he gets angry. Tiresias also has another quote that goes along with knowledge verses ignorance. Tiresias states Im blind, you say; you mock at that! I say you see and still are blind-appallingly: Blind to your origins and to a union in your house. Yes, ask yourself where are you from. Youd never guess what hate is dormant in your home or buried with your dear ones dead, or how a mothers and a fathers curse will one day scourge you with its double thongs and whip you staggering from the land. It shall be night where you now boast the day. (23). This quote says a lot. First Tiresias accuses Oedipus for mocking him yet still not knowing the information that he knows. Which is the curse. He accuses Oedipus for being blind also and not knowing the truth of his origins, which are from a different mother, and then he grew up with. He doesnt see he has married his mother. In one part of the quote it states Yes, ask your self where are you from. Tiresias is hinting at the fact even though Oedipus thinks hes extremely knowledgeable hes ignorant because he doesnt know where he is from. When Tiresias is talking about dear ones dead he means his true father. Both of these quotes show knowledge verses ignorance.
Along with knowledge verses ignorance the play deals with Sight verses blindness. Oedipus says, Friends, it was Apollo, spirit of Apollo, He made this evil fructify. Oh yes, I pierced my eyes, my useless eyes, why not? When all thats sweet had parted from my vision (73). In this quote Oedipus is saying how blind he was and how he could not see at first he married his mother and killed his father. He believes that he has no need for eyes if they will not let him stop being so blind. Oedipus does not mean he was blind from sight but blind that he could not realize what was going on. When he says All thats sweet had parted from my vision he means that after he found out his life turned bad and to him his eyes are useless if they wont work the way he feels like they should work. The chorus says But how can we say that your design was good? To live in blindness? Better live no longer (74). The chorus means that Oedipus should not die because of this. He found out that he killed is father and married his mother but blindness is better then death. Oedipus does not agree with this. He feels that he should die for his actions. A 3rd quote that is stated by Oedipus along with sight verses blindness is What kind of eyes should I need to gaze upon my fathers face in Hades or my unhappy mothers: Those twin victims ruined by me from whom I should be hanged? Or eyes that could stare into my childrens faces? (74). This quote talks about why he poked his eyes out. It says that Oedipus poked out his eyes because he doesnt want to see his fathers face or his mothers face because he caused both of their deaths and feels that he should be killed for it. He also doesnt want to see his childrens faces because of how they will feel. Oedipus shows sight verses blindness very well in these quotes.


Light verses darkness occurs in the play also. Oedipus says I a, deserted, dark, and where is sorrow stumbling? Whence flits that voice so near? Where, demon, will you drive me (72). Oedipus in this quote is alone. Others are around him but it is dark because he cannot see light and people are not helping him. All the chorus members stand in amazement and shock. He acts as though a demon has done this. Also he tries to hear where the voices are coming from. One last quote is said by Oedipus Lost! Ah lost its blazing clear. Light of my days, go dark. I want to gaze no more. My birth all sprung revealed from those it never should, my self-entwined with those I never could. And I the killer of those I never would (67). This quote talks about how he wishes everything was dark so he would not have to see all of this go on. But it is all clear and light so he finally understands all of this and realizes it.
Sophocles uses imagery like light verses darkness, knowledge verses ignorance and sight verses blindness all through out the play. Here were just a few examples of the many that were in the play. All of these quotes show how Sophocles uses imagery in different parts of the play.
~MRE~ Hammond High 2005

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Oedipus

ipus Essay (Fate) Sophocles Oedipus the King is a tragic play which discusses the tragic discovery of Oedipus that he has killed his father and married his mother. The story of Oedipus
was well known to the athenians. Oedipus is the embodiement of the perfect Athenian. He is self-confident, intelligent, and strong willed. Ironically these are the very traits which bring about his
tragic discovery. Oedipus gained the rule of Thebes by answering the riddle of Sphinx. Sophocles used the riddle of the sphinx as a metaphor for the 3 phases of Oedipus life and to futher
characterized him as a tragic man. The Sphinx posed the following riddle to all who came to obtain the rule of thebes: What is it that walks on 4 feet and 2 feet and 3 feet and has only one voice,
when it walks on most feet it is the weakest? Oedipus correctly answered Man and became the king of Thebes. This riddle is a metaphor for the life of Oedipus. As a child man crawls on his
hands and knees this is the four feet to which the Sphinx refers. Also man is at his weakest as a small child. He depends solely on others for his nourishment and well being. Oedipus was the
child of Jocasta and King Laius who was taken to the mountain by a shepard to be killed so the omen of the god apollo that Laius son would kill him and lay with Jocasta would not come true.

Oedipus was the weakest of his life at this point. If it has not been for the shepard spairing his life and giving him to Polybus to raise as his own Oedipus would have died. Man walks on 2 feet
when he has matured. This is a metaphor for Oedipus when he reaches adulthood and leaves Corinth to escape the oracle. Oedipus meets up with a band of travelers and in a rage kills them.

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Inadvertently Oedipus has killed his own father. Oedipus then answers the riddle of the sphinx and becomes king of Thebes. By becoming king of Thebes he marries Jocasta the Queen of thebes
and his own mother. Many years later after bearing children with Jocasta a plague kills many of the inhabitants of Thebes. Oedipus is told by the gods to find the killer of Laius. He is very
dilligent in the inquiriy and finally comes to the horrible truth that he himself is the murderer. Jocasta kills herself at the horrible realization that she has layed with her son and Oedipus puts out
his eyes at finally seeing the truth. This fulfills the final part of the Sphinxs riddle for Oedipus will have to walk with a cane for the rest of his life because of his blindness, this will give him the 3
feet which man walks with at the end of his years. Oedipus used his intellect and diligence to answer the riddle of the Sphinx. Many of the most intelligent young men of thebes has been killed
attempting to answer the riddle but Oedipus proved his intelligence superior to theirs. Oedipus uses the same intelligence and perseverence to find the killer of Laius. He does not give up his
search even when Jocasta warns him to stop and let the matter rest. He calls the shepard and interrogates him till he discovers the horrifying truth that he is the killer. Oedipus intelligence was
ultimately his flaw. Also, if Oedipus had not had been as coarageous he would have have never ventured to answer the riddle of the Sphinx. Thus even though he had killed his father he would
have never become king of Thebes and laid with his mother. In addition, if Oedipus had had the courage but not the intelligence the Spinx would have killed him for answering the riddle
incorrectly. Sophocles used this to characterized Oedipus as a tragic man for he came about his tragic discovery not because of an evil act or an evil trait but because of the person he was. Oedipus
traits which gave him riches and power ultimately led to his tragic ending. Also, the god apollo did not predestine that Oedipus would kill his father and marry his mother by the oracle, he only
stated what he knew was inevitable because of who Oedipus was. The sphinxs riddle was used by Sophocles to characterize Oedipus as a tragic man and as a parallel to his life. The riddle
describes the 3 stages which Oedipus went through in his life. Also in answering the riddle Oedipus inevitable brought about his own tragic ending by a horrible discovery. . Oedipus does not
unselfishly seek out the truth even though he knows it will be painful for him, rather, he has no idea what the outcome of his search will be, denies the truth at every turn, and threatens those who
speak it. Many people may paint Oedipus as a great man, pointing out that he pursues the truth at whatever personal cost and has the strength to accept and endure it when found. They admire that
Oedipus was willing to bring himself down in his lust to find his true identity. However, the driving force of Oedipus fact-finding mission is an attempt to end the disease that plagues his city. He
doesnt realize the personal consequences his hunt will have for him, and his loyalty to the truth is based on his ignorance of it. In fact, if we examine his “quest for identity”, it becomes apparent
that the sequence of events are quite coincidental. First, he summons Tiresias to name the killer, who Oedipus does not at the time believe to be himself. Secon! The tragic hero Oedipus emerges
as anything but a social person. He may begin that way, motivated by a genuine desire to help the people, but what emerges throughout is different. It becomes plain to see that Oedipus is actually,
deep down where it really counts, far more concerned with his own sense of self and demands for justice on his terms, than in compromising his desires like any other true leader would. This
tragedy reminds us that even the bravest, those known throughout the world for their knowledge, are doomed if they set themselves up against the mystery of life itself, and if they try to force life
to answer them, they are going to self-destruct.
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Oedipus

Oedipus Oedipus and Antigone are blood relatives; and as in many relatives, they have both striking similarities and minor differences. Oedipus was the son of King Laus and Queen Jocasta. Oedipus was a very strong king during his reign until the city of Thebes was struck by a plague sent by the gods. Oedipus was a strong leader and the people of Thebes were happy during his time of leadership. Oedipus had a very short temper.

When Creon brought the blind profit to speak with Oedipus and the profit told Oedipus that it was he who murdered the king, Oedipus flew into a rage and blamed Creon for the crime. Another example of Oedipuss enormous temper was when the three highways met and Oedipus wanted to go ahead of an old man and his workers. Oedipus had a tantrum and killed all but one man. This is now known as modern day road rage. Antigone was the daughter/sister of the former king of Thebes, Oedipus.

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Antigone was a very strong woman. She stuck up for what she believed even if the consequences were harsh, such as death. Antigone was a very stubborn woman. She always fought to get her way. An example of this is when there was a direct order from the king not to bury her brother because he was fighting against the city of Thebes.

Creon the king stated, Anyone that buries that person will be sent to death by stoning. She does not care about this threat and buries her brother anyway. Antigone had a lot in common with her father/brother, Oedipus. Both Oedipus and Antigone had strong personalities. Antigone showed her mental strength when going to risk her life for the burial of her brother. Oedipus showed his mental strength when he was asked a riddle from the sphinx. He also showed it when he was a prosperous king.

Antigone was more even-tempered than Oedipus but they were both very stubborn people. Judging by the actions and personalities of Antigone and Oedipus, one can see that relatives have numerous similarities and few diffe.

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