Sophocles, an ancient Grecian dramatist and playwright, wrote “ Oedipus the King ” around 427 B.C. , while life in the most epicurean times of the Athenian epoch, and besides during the Iranian wars ( Bloom 12 ) . He was born and raised in Athens to a household of great award and nobility, and had relationships with other extremely respected Athenians which benefited him and the success he had with his endowment ( Bloom 12 ) . Although really small is known about the beginning of Grecian play, the dramas of Sophocles and other authors of this clip were produced from mythology and dramatic sarcasm ( Walter 7 ) .The writer uses the chief character, Oedipus Rex, to demo the subjects, metaphors, symbolism, and the influences of the Athenian history in a fabulous narrative about the fables and destiny of a society.
Sophocles wrote the narrative of Oedipus Rex in the signifier of a drama, which is the best manner of demoing the personality of each character and doing the events of the drama more exciting for the reader or audience. He uses Oedipus ‘s character transmutation and realisation of himself to put the subject of the narrative. Sophocles uses dramatic sarcasm, where the audience knows what ‘s traveling to go on but the character is nescient of his hereafter, to state the narrative ( Walter 7 ) . William Walter stated, “ Since the audience knows what has happened to Oedipus in the past – which he will shortly detect himself – peculiarly chilling sarcasm attaches to his energetic prosecution of the enquiry and such statements as the one approximately danger to himself from Laius ‘s liquidator. ”
The chief character and supporter is Oedipus, who gives the drama most of its play, calamity, and amusement. Oedipus is a really intelligent adult male who is great at work outing conundrums, including the conundrum of the Sphinx. He appears to be an first-class swayer who ever maintains to provide to his citizens ‘ demands, and does so in a fast-acting mode. Although the people of Thebes admire him and have faith in him as their leader, Oedipus had defects every bit good. He is pig-headedly unsighted to the truth about himself, which is a changeless job he faces throughout the narrative. He leaves his place in Corinth because of a prognostication that was put upon him that he would kill his male parent and slumber with his female parent. After making this, Oedipus becomes highly confident that he can halt his destiny from go oning. Besides, going King of Thebes so rapidly has given him the pride and felicity that makes him believe his life is fantastic, doing it even harder for him to confront the cold truth subsequently on in the drama. After stating the town of Thebes that he will expatriate the liquidator of Laius in order to stop the pestilence, he talks to Tiresias who tries to convert him that he was in fact the slayer of Laius. This incident creates a crisis in the narrative, yet Oedipus refuses to believe it. He and his married woman Jocasta find out that Polybus and Merope are n’t his existent parents, go forthing Oedipus confused and angry. Oedipus besides knows that Jocasta had a babe that she tried to kill because it was plagued with a really similar prognostication to his ain. She pinned the babe ‘s pess together ; Oedipus ‘s pess are ruined. Although he has all the facts to do him recognize the truth, he is unable to see this and refuses to believe what is put before him. The mentions to spy and blindness used in “ Oedipus the King ” refer to both actual and metaphorical sightlessness. Although Oedipus is known for his speedy comprehension and is physically able to see, metaphorically he is unsighted to the things he does n’t desire to believe. Tiresias is a unsighted forecaster of Thebes who ca n’t literally see, but has really clear vision when it comes to knowledge and insight about the truth. Many events in the drama refer back to the subject of sight and sightlessness and it turns out to be a important trait in the characters of the drama.
Another defect that Oedipus possesses is his wont to move excessively rapidly before believing. He flees Corinth to get away his ain prognostication, without sing other possibilities. After go forthing he runs into a wrangle with Laius, the current King of Thebes and his ain male parent, and his work forces and putting to deaths them all. After hearing that the pestilence was happening because the slayer of Laius was in town, he instantly says he will cuss and throw out the slayer from Thebes. Another class of action Oedipus takes before believing it through is when he stabs out his ain eyes after happening out he is the slayer of Laius and that the prognostication cursed to him came true. “ What good were eyes to me? Nothing I could see could convey me joy ” ( Sophocles 1473-74 ) . He begs to be exiled and knows he will ne’er see his girls once more. Almost every action filled event that happens in “ Oedipus the King ” occurs because Oedipus instantly takes action harmonizing to his first inherent aptitude, frequently doing affairs much worse for himself.
Oedipus ‘s married woman and birth female parent, Jocasta, does n’t play much of a function until near to the terminal of the drama, but has an impact on Oedipus ‘s character. She seems to be the support system and sympathizer of Oedipus. She tries to assist maintain peace between him and Creon. Besides, she comforts Oedipus when he hears about Tiresias ‘s prognostications, so when she realizes they are true, she continues to protect him. She is the true female parent of the narrative and the character that deeply attentions for Oedipus and the overall result of the metropolis of Thebes.
The chorus besides plays an of import function in the drama, moving as the ideal audience and giving the reaction the writer is seeking to give off ( Walter 10 ) . Their intent was frequently to oppugn the individuality and intent of new characters coming on phase and demo the changing of times, which helped the reader or audience better understand events in the drama ( Walter 10 ) . Sophocles uses the Chorus in “ Oedipus the King ” , like it is used in most of the other ancient Grecian calamities.
The scene of this play has a big impact on the subject, characters, and overall secret plan. The society and manner of life of the Greeks evolved around the traditions and myths of their ancient clip. The people of Athens, every bit good as Thebes, worshipped the Gods, lived their lives around the imposts of their society, and strongly confided in their faith. Oedipus, along with all the other characters, based their life around destiny and predestination, which was the cause of many events in the drama. Fate plays a strong function in the narrative because if something was meant to go on from the beginning, so there ‘s nil you can make about it. Oedipus is invariably seeking to contend off the destiny of his ain life and get away the immorality that threatens him ; His chief undertaking throughout the drama is to get away the prognostication destiny put upon him, making the bulk of the sarcasm ( Woodard 102 ) .
One of the most of import facets of “ Oedipus the King ” is the dramatic sarcasm that occurs. The first prologue contains really small information about past events, making sarcasm right from the beginning. William Walter stated, “ Since the audience knows what has happened to Oedipus in the past – which he will shortly detect himself – peculiarly chilling sarcasm attaches to his energetic prosecution of the enquiry and such statements as the one approximately danger to himself from Laius ‘s liquidator. ” Oedipus is known for being really intelligence and a great leader and admired by everyone. He saves Thebes from the Sphinx, yet in the terminal the pestilence was put on Thebes all because of him and the unknown fact that he killed King Laius. Oedipus curses the liquidator and reassures the chorus and people of Thebes the penalty the liquidator will hold to confront. When he ‘s doing all these promises about what he ‘ll make to the slayer of Laius, it creates even more dramatic sarcasm because he is the liquidator. As Oedipus and Tiresias are speaking, it ‘s dry that Tiresias is hesitating to talk because he is the 1 that knows the truth about everything. Oedipus, nevertheless, blurts out things to Tiresias because of his choler, and he does n’t cognize the existent truth. Ironically, the adult male who literally ca n’t see ( Tiresias ) knows all the facts and wisdom, and the adult male that can physically see ( Oedipus ) is blinded from the existent facts about himself ( Walter 34 ) . Oedipus negotiations to the courier who tells him the truth about everything. He goes from worrying about the hunt for Laius ‘s liquidator to the hunt of who he is, which ironically are the same hunts ( Walter 38 ) .
Sophocles uses symbolism every bit good to stand for thoughts in “ Oedipus the King ” . Oedipus ‘s name besides means “ conceited pes ” , given to him because his mortise joints were pinned together as a babe which has left him with a distinguishable cicatrix. His lasting hurt symbolizes the manner destiny has marked him, and the manner his mobilisation has ever been affected. The tripartite hamlets that is frequently referred back to during the narrative is besides a symbol used by Sophocles. It represents the minute where his awful prognostication becomes world, and is the chief cause of all the future events of the drama. A hamlet is a topographic point where a determination must be made, and in this instance Oedipus ‘s determination has major effects.
As Oedipus ‘s character goes through many troubles and conflicts with happening the truth about himself, it greatly impacts him as a individual. In the beginning he is a witty, disdainful and epic King with all the assurance in the universe. Towards the center of the drama he turns into an oppressor in complete denial of the truth. In the terminal he turns out to be a rejected, fearful adult male in wretchedness from his tragic destiny. Sophocles put all the facets of destiny, Grecian history, sarcasm, legends, mythology, symbolism, and sightlessness to demo the calamity battled by Oedipus Rex and the people of Thebes. Sophocles ‘ ability to set so many different thoughts and significances into one drama is what has made “ Oedipus the King ” , along with the other two Oedipus dramas, legendary to our society.