Oedipus the King is play that tells of a renowned king and his struggle between free will and his alleged fate. Oedipus was prophesized to kill his father and marry his mother. After learning about the prophecy, Oedipus immediately takes action by leaving his hometown of Corinth and avoiding his supposed parents. In Oedipus the King, Sophocles shows that Oedipus' actions contribute to his downfall; it is his vain short temper, enormous pride, and impulsive nature that cause him to make the decisions that set into action the course of events that not only lead to his own doom, but ironically the fate he tries so desperately to escape. Oedipus the King is ripe with examples of Oedipus' short temper.
Lastly, it predicts that Oedipus’s sons will kill each other in battle. All three prophecies come true, thus proving the existence of divine intervention. Divine intervention is definitely present, but free will has its place too. Before the play even starts, Oedipus makes the choice to leave his “parents” and move to Thebes. He then chooses, though ruled by anger, to kill an old man blocking his path, who later is discovered to be his real father, King Laius.
Oedipus the King by Sophocles is the story of a man who was destined to kill his father and marry his mother. The ancient Greeks believed that their gods decided what would ultimately happen to each and every person.Man was free to choose and was ultimately held responsible for his own actions. Both the concept of fate and free will played an important part in Oedipus' destruction. Although he was a victim of fate, he was not controlled by it. Oedipus was destined from birth to someday marry his mother and to murder his father.
His arrogance is shown in the very first lines he speaks, “Here I am – myself – you all know me, / the world knows my fame: / I am Oedipus” (7-9). When Oedipus is told by the oracle that he will marry his mother and kill his father, he arrogantly thinks he can run away from his fate. Believing that Polybus and Merope were his biological parents, Oedipus fled Corinth, attempting to escape his destiny. Oedipus ' pride is revealed in his belief that he is greater than the gods. He believes that he is capable of establishing his own destiny apart from the gods ' control or help.
When hearing his fate is to kill his father, Oedipus ends up back in Thebes, becoming the king and his mother’s husband, taking his real father’s place, who was by then, already killed. Oedipus thinks the only solution is to run from his problems, but his fate always seems to come right back, continuously. Arguing Oedipus has his major problems because of a flaw, has yet to create a good, solid hypothesis of what his real flaw happens to be. Possibly the plays about Oedipus and Jocasta are supposed to show that faults and mistakes can happen to everyone, and that humans almost have no power compared to fate or the
Imagine the reaction of a couple who received a chilling prophecy from an oracle who declared that their infant was destined to kill his father and marry his mother. Would it be reasonable for a couple murder their child, because of a frightening prophecy? Modern society would be aghast at this disgusting choice, but unfortunately Oedipus’s parents abandoned him, where he was saved by the mercy of others. Fate was against Oedipus, and he inadvertently created a domino effect of tragic choices that would make his parent’s prophecy a reality. Oedipus fled Corinth leading him to kill a disrespectful stranger.
Sophocles, instead of killing Oedipus in the end of the novel, chose to give Oedipus a fate worse then death. Oedipus found out who he was and that he killed his father and slept with his mother. His tragic end was a result of his hamartia, hubris. His pride was what caused him to attack the carriage and kill his father, which led to him marrying his mother. He could have ignored the mere right of way argument, but the person he was inside couldn't.
Also, in the previous quote, Oedipus tries to diminish his shame by convincing his people that it is not his fault, but Apollo’s, for murdering his father and marrying his mother. The moral of this story is that human beings can’t escape their fate, and thus it is not Oedipus’ fault for committing those two crimes. To destroy Oedipus, the gods granted the power of prophecy to oracles that delivered these prophecies to Laius and Jocasta. As a result, they kill their child to get rid of him and his terrible prophecies. Unfortunately, these prophecies came true because Oedipus didn’t know his real parents.
This leads to him killing his father unknowingly at a young age fulfilling the prophecy and contributing to the resolution. Another archetype that is relevant is that of Laios and Jocasta which is bad parenting. They get rid of Oedipus as a child and by doing this they play out the prophecy. This shows their clearly shows how ignorant they are. Instead of taking on the “problem” they simply throw it away and let it grow up into a even bigger problem.
Oedipus, being the new leader of Thebes, pledges to discover the identity of the murderer so he can end the disaster. In his searching, Oedipus discovers that he is the murderer of the king and eventually discovers that Iocaste is really his own mother. In a Greek tragedy the hero is a character amply capable of choices, capable, too of accepting the ... ... middle of paper ... ... himself by self-blinding. The audience is left with feelings of pity and fear. Oedipus does not curse God and die though, he does eventually accept his fate, prays for blessings upon his children, and prepares to endure his own exile.