Presentation on theme: "Reading Classics of Humanities (I) OEDIPUS REX Week 4 Iris Tuan."— Presentation transcript:
Reading Classics of Humanities (I) OEDIPUS REX Week 4 Iris Tuan
Sophocles Sophocles (ancient Greek: 495 BC - 406 BC) was the second of three great ancient Greek tragedians. According to the Suda, a tenth century AD encyclopedia, he wrote 123 or more plays during the course of his life. For almost 50 years, he was the dominant competitor in the dramatic competitions of ancient Athens that took place during the religious festivals of the Lenaea and the Dionasia.
Sophocles His first victory was in 468 BC, this was the first time that he competed. Only seven of his tragedies have survived into modern times with their text completely known. The most famous of these are the three tragedies concerning Oedipus and Antigone: these are often known as the Theban plays or The Oedipus Cycle. Sophocles influenced the development of the drama, most importantly by adding a third character and thereby reducing the importance of the chorus in the presentation of the plot.
Sophocles A marble relief of a poet, perhaps Sophocles.
The Theban plays (The Oedipus Cycle) Perhaps the most famous of Sophocles plays are commonly known as the Theban plays or The Oedipus Cycle. The cycle consists of the plays Oedipus Rex (or Oedipus Tyrannus), which won the second prize at the Dionysia festival ca. 429, Oedipus at Colonus, which won the first prize when produced by his grandson, and Antigone. Taking up the theme of humans being trapped both by fate and their own frailties, the plays tell the story of the family of Oedipus.
Oedipus A modern painting portraying Oedipus at Colonus.
Oedipus Rex Antigone Leads Oedipus out of Thebes by Charles Francois Jalabeat
Oedipus Rex Oedipus the King (Oedipus Tyrannus, or "Oedipus the Tyrant"), also known as Oedipus Rex, is a Greek tragedy, written by Sophocles and first performed ca. 429 BC. The play was the second of Sophocles' three Theban plays to be produced, but comes first in the internal chronology of the plays, followed by Oedipus at Colonus and then Antigone. Over the centuries it has come to be regarded by many as the Greek tragedy par excellence.
Oedipus Rex Oedipus, son of King Laiusof Thebes and Queen Jocasta. After Laius learned from an oracle that "he was doomed/To perish by the hand of his own son," Jocasta ordered a messenger to leave him for dead "In Cithaeron's wooded glens." Instead, the baby was given to a shepherd and raised in the court of King Polybus of Corinth. As a young man in Corinth, Oedipus heard a rumor that he was not the biological son of Polybus and Merope. When Oedipus asked them, they denied it. Oedipus remained suspicious and decided to ask the Delphic Oracle who his real parents were.
The Oracle seemed to ignore this question, but instead told him that he was destined to "Mate with [his] own mother, and shed/ With [his] own hands the blood of [his] own sire." Oedipus left Corinth under the belief that Polybus and Merope, Polybus' wife, were his true parents. On the road to Thebes, he met Laius and they argued over which wagon had the right-of-way. Oedipus' pride led him to kill Laius, ignorant of the fact that he was his biological father, fulfilling part of the oracle's prophecy.
Oedipus Rex Oedipus then went on to solve the Sphinx's riddle: "What is the creature that walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon and three in the evening?" To this Oedipus answered "Man. " Distraught that her riddle had been answered correctly, the Sphinx threw herself off the side of the wall. His reward for freeing the kingdom of Thebes from the Sphinx's curse was kingship and the hand of the queen, Jocasta, who was also his biological mother. Thus, the prophecy was fulfilled
Oedipus Rex The play begins years after Oedipus is given the throne of Thebes. The chorus of Thebans cries out to Oedipus for salvation from the plague sent by the gods in response to Laius' murder. Oedipus searches for Laius' murderer and promises to exile the man responsible for it, ignorant of the fact that he is the murderer. The blind prophet, Tiresias, is called to aid Oedipus in his search; however, after warning Oedipus not to follow through with the investigation, Oedipus accuses him of being the murderer, even though Tiresias is blind and aged. Oedipus also accuses Tiresias of conspiring with Creon, Jocasta's brother, to overthrow him.
Oedipus Rex Oedipus then calls for one of Laius' former servants, the only surviving witness of the murder, who fled the city when Oedipus became king to avoid being the one to reveal the truth. Soon a messenger from Corinth also arrives to inform Oedipus of the death of Polybus, whom Oedipus still believes is his real father. At this point the messenger informs him that he was in fact adopted and his real parentage is unknown.
Oedipus Rex Jocasta guesses the truth and runs away. Oedipus is stubborn; however, a second messenger arrives and reveals that Jocasta has hanged herself and Oedipus, upon discovering her body, blinds himself with the golden brooches on her dress. The play ends with Oedipus entrusting his children to Creon and declaring his intent to leave in exile. Creon, however, convinces Oedipus that they should consult the Delphic Oracle on what to do next. Creon leads Oedipus back into the palace. The chorus then admonishes the audience to count no man happy until he has died.
Oedipus Rex Two oracles dominate the plot of Oedipus the King. Jocasta relates the prophecy that was told to Laius before the birth of Oedipus. Laius was only told of the patricide and not of the incest. Jocast é : An oracle was reported to LaÏos (I will not say from Phoibos himself, but from His appointed ministers, at any rate) That his doom would be death at the hands of his own son— His son, born of his flesh and of mine! (Scene 2 Line 186-190)
Oedipus Rex Hearing this prophecy prompts Oedipus to recall one he received from the Delphic Oracle shortly before he left Corinth: Oedipus: I went to the shrine at Delphi. The god dismissed my question without reply; He spoke of other things. Some were clear, Full of wretchedness, dreadful, unbearable: As, that I should lie with my own mother, breed Children from whom all men would turn their eyes; And that I should be my father’s murderer. I heard all this, and fled. (Scene 2 Line 262-270)