Oedipus the King

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The tragic drama Oedipus the King is regarded as one of Sophocles (495 and 405 B.C.) greatest and surviving plays. Written between 420 and 430 B.C., the Greek tragedy tells a story about an immortal’s attempt to defy the ill fate that his gods bestowed upon him. He became a fugitive, only to later uncover the roots of his birth, and find himself in the ruins foretold. From murder to vengeance, a stranger to the land he rules, proves to be native, and turns out to be the son and husband of the woman who borne him, and the father and brother of his very own children. Sophocles incites that the Olympian gods do exist, and that we cannot fight their decrees. We follow the fate they have devised for us, and all efforts to change their plans will prove useless, for we cannot escape our destiny.
It had been over a decade that the late ruler of Thebes, King Laius, was murdered when the Greek tragedy began unfolding. After the demise of King Laius, son of Labdacus, Oedipus of Corinth succeeded his throne. The stranger from Corinth was offered the royal authority rights when he saved the city from a sphinx who guzzled everyone who failed to solve her riddles. The late ruler’s widowed queen Jocasta also joined in matrimony with the Corinthian, and bore him four children, two daughters, Ismene and Antigone, and two sons, Polyneices and Eteocles. The story opens stage during a terrible plague that was sweeping throughout the city of Thebes, robbing women in labor of their children, land of their fruits, and livestock of their health. Shaken by this pandemic, citizens of Thebes visited their king to beseech help. Thebans concluded that Oedipus was the only one capable of ridding the plague that had befallen their city, for he was the renowned h...

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...e messenger mentioned. Upon his arrival, King Oedipus threatens to torture and kill him if he did not spill answers. By then, it had all become too apparent to Jocasta. The dreadful prophetic oracles had all came true. She begged Oedipus to cease from seeking out more facts of his birth, but failed to, and took her own life. The servant Oedipus sent for revealed what Oedipus feared most. They pieced and tied together the ankles of the child, which helped explain the scars on Oedipus’s ankles, and that child he was instructed to abandon in the mountains, was a child conceived by Jocasta and Laius. Orders were to leave the child in the mountains to die, but out of pity, he gave the child to a messenger who said he would take him to a foreign land. In agony, Oedipus dug out his own eyeballs and banished himself in the mountains where he was to be left for dead as child.
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