(Johnston) Delphi sends word that Laius’s murderer must be banished or killed to drive the desolation of the plague from Thebes. Oedipus immediately and publicly pronounces a curse on Laius’s murderer, obviously having no clue that he is that man. Oedipus soon sends for Tiresias, so that he may acquire the identity of Laius’s killer. When the blind prophet refuses to divulge who killed Laius, Oedipus demeans him for his blindness and states his disbelief in Tiresias’s ability to prophesize. After much quarreling, Tiresias exclaims to all that Oedipus is the
After saving the city from the Sphinx and her riddle, King Oedipus learns that a plague has beset upon the population. After consulting with the oracle at Delphi, Oedipus realizes that an unsolved crime is the cause for the suffering of the people. In this consultation, the oracle tells Creon that corruption must be driven from the land. At this point, the corruption is assumed to be the murder of the previous king of Thebes. This is a hint of what is to come in the reading.
Oedipus vows to cast out the murderer and save the city. Following Creon's recommendation, Oedipus sends for Tiresias, a blind prophet, and asks for information regarding the murder. Tiresias reluctantly declares that Oedipus himself is the murderer. Oedipus sends Tiresias away in rage, but before he leaves Tiresias says that the murderer of Laius is both the father and brother to his own children and the son of his own wife. Oedipus summons Creon and accuses him of conspiring with Tiresias against him and threatens him with death or exile.
Another example of Oedipus’ presumptuous temperament is when he immediately assumes that Creon is trying to take his power from him. Creon sends Tiresias to Oedipus to help him solve the crime of the plague, and when Tiresias reveals that Oedipus must die in order to save the people of Thebes, Oedipus assumes Creon is trying to take his throne. Creon even tells Oedipus, “…if you think crude, mindless stubbornness such a gift, you’ve lost your sense of balance” (Meyer 1438). Oedipus’ impulsive nature leads him to discovering the truth and reveals that he has indeed fulfilled the prophecy he was running from. After Oedipus becomes king of Thebes, the people of Thebes become plagued.
In his attempt at trying to be the savior of his people, he condemns the man who killed the former king. He wants to punish that man because he is the reason for the plague that is harming his people. He says, "Whoever he was that killed the king may readily wish to dispatch me with his murderous hand; so helping the dead king I help myself." (161-4) What he does not realize is that he is the culprit, the reason for the problem, and because he is going unpunished, the plague had continued. When Oedipus is a young adult, he goes to the oracle of Apollo, who tells him that he will one day kill his father and marry his mother.
Hamlet wants to insure that the ghost really was his dead father before he kills Claudius. To do this Hamlet has people act out the death of his father in front of Claudius and declares him guilty by his reaction to the play. " O good Horatio, I'll take the ghost's word for a thousand pound." Hamlet declares Claudius' guilt to Horatio and now realizes that he must continue on with his revenge plot. The conflict between Hamlet and Claudius is delayed by Hamlet but does eventually occur in the last scene.
In the process of searching for the murderer, Oedipus discovers that it is he, himself, who is responsible and that he is actually the son of Jocasta and her previous husband. Horrified by his sins of incest and murder, Oedipus claws out his eyes. Jocasta commits suicide because she is so disgraced. My disappointment in the lack of mystery in the plot of the play was evoked by the continual clues appearing throughout the play. For example, in Oedipus's first speech to the people of Thebes, he condemns the murderer of the previous king, stating that "he will suffer no unbearable punishment, nothing worse than exile" (261-62).
"Children, young sons and daughters of old Cadmus, why do you sit here with your suppliant crowns? ", Oedipus asks his people unknowing that the answer given would set off a series of ill-fated events for the inquirer himself. The people of Thebes ask Oedipus to find a way to end the blight plaguing their city. In search for an end to this madness a prophecy is revealed that in order for the plague to end a man must be cast out of Thebes. A man who killed his father became husband to his mother and father to his brothers and sisters.
Oedipus quickly sets out to attempt to solve this mystery. Oedipus then calls upon the blind seer Tiresias to tell him who killed Laius. Upon finding out that Tiresias has told Oedipus that he is the murderer, he sends Tiresias away. While leaving, Tiresias explains the marriage between a
Hamlet is seen mourning the loss through wearing black clothes in the beginning of the play. After learning the possible cause of his father’s death, he procrastinates taking action immediately and waits until he finds the right opportunity. This is seen through his play taunting the reaction of Claudius and by turning back on killing him while praying in Act (). Laertes in contrast, goes straightforward to the direct cause, bringing a mob with him and asking Claudius directly for the reason of the murder. Seeing the lack of honour given to Polonius in his funeral and his sister turning crazy as a result, has fueled his desire to take revenge on Hamlet.