Essay on Character Analysis: The Personality of Oedipus

Essay on Character Analysis: The Personality of Oedipus

Length: 1628 words (4.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

There are many facets of personality of a minor character that authors may utilize to supply contrast to the main character of their work. Some of these contrasts are extremely noticeable and some are not. One such facet is with the use of a neutral character; to not only showcase the main character’s flaws, but so not to detract from the moral of the story. Creon, from the play “Oedipus the King” by Sophocles is used for both of these reasons. Sophocles wished to show that one cannot escape fate, yet did not want to cloud this issue with a possible coupe against his main character Oedipus. He also showed how, at times one character can act completely irrational, while one remains calm in the face of serious accusations.
Creon is the brother of Iocaste, the Queen of Thebes, and was the brother-in-law to both King Laios and King Oedipus. When King Laios was regent he had consulted an oracle concerning possible children. When the oracle revealed there would be a curse upon the child, that he would kill his father and marry his mother, King Laios and Queen Iocaste chose to have the infant slayed. Although no one aware, the child was rescued and taken to a far off land. Years later, Oedipus, unaware of who his biological parents really were, received a similar prophecy from an oracle and chose to leave his homeland forever, so as not to cause his parents harm or shame. In the same timeframe, King Laios decided to make a pilgrimage and the court was uncertain exactly what had transpired, but the King never returned. It was “said that a band of highwaymen attacked them, outnumbered them, and overwhelmed the King” (Sophocles 713). Supposedly one lone survivor got away and this was the tale he imparted. As King Laios and Queen Iocaste h...

... middle of paper ...
the Tyrant." The Journal of Politics 66.3 (2004): 773-99. JSTOR. Web. 20 Apr. 2012.
"Creon." Who's Who in Classical Mythology, Routledge. London: Routledge, 2002. Credo
Reference. Web. 18 April 2012.
Edmunds, Lowell. "Sophocles Oedipus Tyrannus 80-81." Harvard Studies in Classical Philology
80 (1976): 41-44. JSTOR. Web. 19 Apr. 2012.
Laughton, Eric. "Two Passages of the Oedipus Tyrannus." The Classical Review 52.6 (Dec.
1938): 210-11. JSTOR. Web. 19 Apr. 2012.
Peterkin, L. Denis. "The Creon of Sophocles." Classical Philology 24.3 (Jul 1929): 263-73.
JSTOR. Web. 18 Apr. 2012.
Powell, J. Enoch. "Notes on the Oedipus Tyrannus." Classical Philology 30.1 (Jan 1935): 66-72.
JSTOR. Web. 19 Apr. 2012.
Sidwell, Keith. "The Argument of the Second Stasimon of Oedipus Tyrannus." The Journal of
Hellenic Studies 112 (1992): 106-22. JSTOR. Web. 19 Apr. 2012.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis Of Creon 's ' Oedipus The King ' Essay

- Drama Essay Creon is depicted as a clear-headed, Calm, and rational character in “Oedipus the King” as he deals with a crazed Oedipus’ accusations of treason, as well as losing his sister, also Oedipus’ wife, through a suicide. He does not change from this personality until the very end of the play, when he gets his first glimpse of power as Oedipus’ reign begins to crumble. Even so, he remains gentle to Oedipus. His character takes a drastic turn for the worse after becoming the King of Thebes in “Antigone,” a position of now absolute power that begins to corrupt him....   [tags: Oedipus, Sophocles, Creon, Oedipus at Colonus]

Powerful Essays
832 words (2.4 pages)

Essay about Oedipus, a Tragic Hero

- Oedipus a Tragic Hero What is a tragic hero. A Tragic hero is a man or character who has great influence, makes an error in his or her actions, and who must suffer the consequences of those actions. Oedipus’ tragic flaws starts with his excessive pride which leads to overconfidence as the people in the city lift him up and feed his ego: “You are not one of the immortal gods we know; Yet we have come to you to make our prayer. As to the man of all men best in adversity and wisest in the ways of God.” (Prologue, Line 34-37) Personality/character changes that moved him from being a great king to a blind man....   [tags: Character Analysis, Oddyssey]

Powerful Essays
1026 words (2.9 pages)

Oedipus Essay

- This analysis of Oedipus’s character shows how Oedipus, the protagonist and the antagonist against himself, dealt with unfortunate situations which sealed his fate. Oedipus was a strange round character that was really interesting and mysterious. Oedipus’s life was a good example of a true Greek tragedy; he worked himself up to be a great king and ultimately in the end he died with only his perception on life. Oedipus was once a man of power who falls impoverished. He goes from having much respect in his great position to being impure, blind, and expelled from the land that he once ruled....   [tags: Character Analysis]

Powerful Essays
742 words (2.1 pages)

The Use of Dramatic Irony in Sophocle's Oedipus the King Essay

- The Use of Dramatic Irony in Sophocle's Oedipus the King Tragedy as an element of the human experience has been the subject of many of the great works of literature written in the Western tradition. For some, tragedy embodies the highest form of humanity. It is through suffering that we are able to reveal ourselves most completely. Others see tragedy as an element of morality where we are to learn well the lessons of those who tempt the gods. The Ancient Greek philosopher, Aristotle, outlined a theory of tragedy as archetypal drama in his classic work, the Poetics....   [tags: Oedipus Rex, Sophocles]

Powerful Essays
2382 words (6.8 pages)

Essay on Character Analysis : ' Antigone '

- Character Biography: Antigone Antigone is a very stubborn character who stands up for what she believes in. she has a strong personality and will not take nonsense from anyone. Her insistence on her desire beyond the limits of reason make her appear ugly and abject. She is particularly arrogant towards her sister (Ismene) who possesses feminine qualities, and is the object of all men’s desires. Antigone is very envious towards her sister, however she will never show nor admit it. This is because Antigone has a “masculine” physique and curses her womanhood....   [tags: Oedipus, Creon, Sophocles, Haemon]

Powerful Essays
1040 words (3 pages)

The Stranger in Oedipus Essay

- Murder, assault, and other forms of violence are widespread plagues that haunt modern society. In order to combat these relevant issues society has implemented different systems over the years. These systems have moved from a simple mindset to intricate organizations of jurisdiction and law. Violence appears not only in reality but, in novels and literary works alike. Albert Camus’ The Stranger depicts a modern system of justice; however, Sophocles Oedipus Rex portrays a simplistic system of justice....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]

Powerful Essays
1468 words (4.2 pages)

Essay about Modern Psychiatry : Oedipus And Orestes Complexes

- In this age few tragedies are written. It has often been held that the lack is due to a paucity of heroes among us, or else that modern man has had the blood drawn out of his organs of belief by the skepticism of science, and the heroic attack on life cannot feed on an attitude of reserve and circumspection. For one reason or another, we are often held to be below tragedy-or tragedy above us. The inevitable conclusion is, of course, that the tragic mode is archaic, fit only for the very highly placed, the kings or the kingly, and where this admission is not made in so many words it is most often implied....   [tags: Tragedy, Tragic hero, Poetics, Character]

Powerful Essays
1528 words (4.4 pages)

Analysis of Oedipus the King Essay

- The tale of Oedipus and his prophecy has intrigued not only the citizens of Greece in the ancient times, but also people all over the world for several generations. Most notable about the play was its peculiar structure, causing the audience to think analytically about the outcomes of Oedipus’ actions and how it compares with Aristotle’s beliefs. Another way that the people have examined the drama is by looking at the paradoxes (such as the confrontation of Tiresias and Oedipus), symbols (such as the Sphinx), and morals that has affected their perceptions by the end of the play....   [tags: Sophocles, Greek Tragedy]

Powerful Essays
1823 words (5.2 pages)

The Role of Faith and the Gods in Oedipus Rex Essay

- A common struggle man faces is the question of who or what has power and control over his life. Does he have total control of his future, or is there a higher being at work that takes human lives into their own hands. Sophocles, in his work Oedipus Rex, establishes a view that gives fate, which is created by the gods, a seemingly inescapable characteristic over man. The role of fate is clearly defined, through the fulfillment of divine prophecy, and Oedipus’ inability to recognize prophecy as a realistic source of knowledge, as a fate that strikes a delicate balance with the free will of man....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]

Powerful Essays
1714 words (4.9 pages)

Hamlet versus Oedipus Essays

- Since time has begun, the battle between good and evil has been the epic foretelling of man’s hardened sense of self. Whether in the theater of war fought on open battlegrounds, or if it’s just the little angel or demon that sits on your shoulder telling you right and wrong. The battle of ones angels and demons are constant and never ending until death when one meets their ultimate fate. Hamlet and Oedipus suffer from their own individual flaws which propel them towards their unfortunate fate. Hamlet’s father is murdered by his brother Claudius, while Oedipus kills his own father....   [tags: Shakespeare vs Sophocles]

Powerful Essays
613 words (1.8 pages)