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Oedipus 3 Essay, Research Paper

From marrying his mother to killing his father, no one could be more of a tragic hero, than Oedipus. Oedipus experiences the three characteristics of being a tragic hero, which are: he/she must be of high position and have noble qualities, he/she must be capable of suffering, and he/she must have a flaw that will lead to their downfall. Being born cursed will lead Oedipus to become a tragic hero.

He was naturally born in Thebes, and his parents had heard from a prophet what was destined to happen between this family. So to shun the prophet s prediction, the parents of Oedipus sent a servant to abandon him on a mountain. Oedipus was a prince from birth; first, he was the prince of Thebes from his biological parents Laios and Iocasta, and then the prince of Corinth when Polybus and Merop adopted him. As he was raised into a man in Corinth, he discovered his faith, which made him flee to Corinth to avoid the prediction of marrying his mother and killing his father. Avoiding his fate, this led him to the city of Thebes, where he saves the city from the sphinx; and became the King of Thebes.

In plain words

The god commands us to expel from the land of Thebes

An old defilement that it seems we shelter.

It is a deathly thing, beyond expiation.

We must not let it feed upon us any longer. -Creon

While ruling Thebes a terrible sickness came over the city and Oedipus was told that to cure the city, he must find the killer of the late king. Oedipus, being a noble man declares that whoever it is will be killed or exiled. He cares very much for the city, and will do whatever he can to clean this city of its pollution.

Realizing his fate was true; Oedipus killed his father Laios and married his mother Iocasta. This made him the murderer of the late king and leads him to exile himself from Thebes. As the details of his cruel fate were revealed, Polybus dies of sickness, and Iocasta commits suicide due to her actions when Oedipus was a child. This would cause great suffering in any human being. No matter how strong or great a person appears to be, they can still suffer from any type of situation.

As Oedipus argues with Teiresias on knowing whether he killed his father, this shows Oedipus stubbornness, for he did not realize the truth until later.

(To Teiresias) Wealth, power, craft of statesmanship!

Kingly position, everywhere admired!

What savage envy is stored up against these,

If Creon, whom I trusted, Creon my friend,

For this great office which the city once

Put in my own hands unsought-if for this power

Creon desires in secret to destroy me

(To Creon) You murderer!

Do you think I do not know

That you plotted to kill me, plotted to steal my throne? -Oedipus

Oedipus accuses Creon of trying to take the throne. He believed that Teiresias and Creon were creating a conspiracy against him, and accused Creon of murdering Laios. His stubbornness led to his downfall. Oedipus lost of both his fathers, and his mother/wife, blinded himself and lost his nobility, due to trying to avoid his fate. Fate is fate, and what the Oracle of Delphi pronounced was bound to happen no matter what Oedipus did.

Oedipus was a very good noble king. He lost everything and died knowing all what he tried to avoid. Due to his stubbornness, this led him to his downfall. Oedipus fits into all the categories of being a tragic hero. He was arrogant and did look down upon people, but that did not stop him from trying as hard as he can to make the city of Thebes happy, and rid them of the plague that brushed over them. Oedipus accepted his wrong doings and banished himself from Thebes just like he said would. Everything Oedipus had gone through makes him the tragic hero that he is.


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