Literary Terms Oedipus Rex by Sophocles: Introduction This play Oedipus Rex has also been called Oedipus Tyrannus at certain chapter in the history of attic tragedy.
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Many parts or elements of the myth of Oedipus occur before the opening scene of the play, although some are alluded to in the text. Oedipus is the son of Laius and Jocastathe king and queen of Thebes. The misfortunes of his house are the result of a curse laid upon his father for violating the sacred laws of hospitality.
Laius seduced or abducted and raped Chrysippus, who according to some versions, killed himself in shame. When his son is born, the king consults an oracle as to his fortune. To his horror, the oracle reveals that Laius "is doomed to perish by the hand of his own son".
Unable to kill her own son, Jocasta orders a servant to slay the infant for her.
The servant then exposes the infant on a mountaintop, where he is found and rescued by a shepherd in some versions, the servant gives the infant to the shepherd. The shepherd names the child Oedipus"swollen feet", as his feet had been tightly bound by Laius.
The shepherd brings the infant to Corinthand presents him to the childless king Polybuswho raises Oedipus as his own son. As he grows to manhood, Oedipus hears a rumour that he is not truly the son of Polybus and his wife, Merope.
He asks the Delphic Oracle who his parents really are. Desperate to avoid this terrible fate, Oedipus, who still believes that Polybus and Merope are his true parents, leaves Corinth for the city of Thebes.
On the road to Thebes, Oedipus encounters Laius and his retainers, and the two quarrel over whose chariot has the right of way. The Theban king moves to strike the insolent youth with his sceptre, but Oedipus, unaware that Laius is his true father, throws the old man down from his chariot, killing him.
Thus, Laius is slain by his own son, and the prophecy that the king had sought to avoid by exposing Oedipus at birth is fulfilled. Before arriving at Thebes, Oedipus encounters the Sphinxa legendary beast with the head and breast of a woman, the body of a lioness, and the wings of an eagle.
The Sphinx was sent to the road approaching Thebes as a punishment from the gods, and would strangle any traveler who failed to answer a certain riddle. The precise riddle asked by the Sphinx varied in early traditions, and is not stated in Oedipus Rex, as the event precedes the play; but the most widely-known version is, "what is the creature that walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon, and three in the evening?
Bested by the prince, the Sphinx throws herself from a cliff, thereby ending the curse. Plot[ edit ] P. Oedipus, King of Thebes, sends his brother-in-law, Creon, to ask advice of the oracle at Delphiconcerning a plague ravaging Thebes. Creon returns to report that the plague is the result of religious pollution, since the murderer of their former king, Laiushas never been caught.
Oedipus vows to find the murderer and curses him for causing the plague. Oedipus summons the blind prophet Tiresias for help. Outraged, Tiresias tells the king that Oedipus himself is the murderer "You yourself are the criminal you seek". Oedipus cannot see how this could be, and concludes that the prophet must have been paid off by Creon in an attempt to undermine him.
Eventually Tiresias leaves, muttering darkly that when the murderer is discovered he shall be a native citizen of Thebes, brother and father to his own children, and son and husband to his own mother.
The King demands that Creon be executed; however, the chorus persuades him to let Creon live.Sophocles advocates the definition in the tragic play Oedipus Rex. He develops the play with the great polarities of fame and shame, sight and blindness, and ignorance and insight to show Oedipus experiences in search for knowledge about his identity.
The Oedipus Plays: Antigone, Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus SparkNotes Literature Guide (SparkNotes Literature Guide Series) Feb 4, by SparkNotes and Sophocles.
Concepts Of Sight in Sophocles’ Play Oedipus Essay - Concepts Of Sight in Sophocles’ Play Oedipus The concept of sight is one of the major motifs throughout Sophocles’ play Oedipus the King.
The play revolves primarily around series of events caused by many people’s insight or lack there of. While the chorus in Oedipus Rex frequently refers to fate, the members of the chorus actually refer to it more in terms of a fated punishment for wrong doing rather than a lack of free will.
Blindness and Sight in Oedipus the King - Lack of Vision Essay Oedipus Rex, Sophocles] Free Essays words ( pages) Blindness and Sight - Lack of Vision in Oedipus The King Essay - Blindness in Oedipus The King (Rex) What is sight.
Is it just the ability to recognize one’s surroundings or is there more. The ThemeTracker below shows where, and to what degree, the theme of Fate vs.
Free Will appears in each section of Oedipus Rex. Click or tap on any chapter to read its Summary & Analysis.