Oedipus the king is a tragic hero

January 12, 2021 by Essay Writer

Oedipus Rex is a play written by Sophocles a great Greek play writer. It is perhaps from one of the great tragedies written in the history. Here the question arises what is a tragedy? Tragedy, a branch of drama that treats in a serious and dignified style the sorrowful or terrible events encountered or caused by a heroic individual. Tragedy occurs only with a good character, not with any other person who is criminal or a bad character. Oedipus the main character of the play is a great king of Thebes with ideal traits in his ideal personality also but he breaks moral laws so he is a tragic hero .this drama shows as catharsis at the end of the drama when all the good deeds of Oedipus are wasted in the struggle against the bad. He had some idea about his fate; so he wanted to escape from it but he did not Ah. If I was created so, born to this fate. Who could deny the savagery of God? O holy majesty of heavenly powers! May I never see that day! Never! Rather let me vanish from the race of men then know the abomination destined me (759-785) In these lines, we can see that he is trying to save from his fate but he can’t. When he was born his parents came to know that he was an abused child and he will kill his father and will marry her mother so they decided to kill him and gave him to a shepherd to take him in the forest and leave there so a wild animal comes and eat him. By fate, another shepherd came there and save him and sell him to another king who brought up him. He did not know that who his father is. When Oedipus comes to know that he will kill his father and will marry her mother. He escapes from that place and was on the way to another place. He killed an old man on his way and on the way he meets the spinach he is in Thebes .he solved his riddle and save Thebes from destruction. The king of Thebes had already died and the queen of Thebes married him and in this way, he becomes the king of Thebes. Oedipus had Ah God! It was true! All prophecies! – Now, O Light, may I look on you for the last time! I, Oedipus, Oedipus, damned in his birth, in his marriage damned. Damned in the blood he shed with his own hand! ” (514-521) King Oedipus can be taken as a typical hero of classical tragedies. Aristotle, the first philosopher to theorize the art of drama, obviously studied Oedipus and based his observation about the qualities of a tragic hero upon the example of Oedipus. In Aristotle’s conception, a tragic hero is a distinguished person occupying a high position, living in prosperous circumstances and falling into misfortune because of an error in judgment. Aristotle used the word “hamartia” to indicate the protagonist’s tragic weakness. According to Aristotelianpercepts about the tragedy, a tragic hero would be a man of noticeable qualities of behavior, intelligent and powerful, but by no means perfect. The fall of a totally saint-like figure or a totally depraved rogue would violate the moral expectation and the audience would think such fall design less, chaotic and unjustifiable. Oedipus is neither a saint nor a rogue. Despite his qualities, he falls because of his mistakes. His position is indeed as frail as ours, and he fails like common men in one sense, and such frailty of human position is what tragedy has to make us realize. In terms of the Australian theory of tragedy, Oedipus is a tragic hero because he is not perfect but the other side of the coin is that he is a noble and a good king. he is good for his nation and is a good king he loves the people of his country, but fate is fate nobody can change it. Every person is obvious of his fate he has to the boy down in front of his fate. Sophliespoint out the tragic flaws of Oedipus personality, the main and the first tragic flaw of his personality is pride and self-righteousness. “The tyrant is a child of Pride Who drinks from his great sickening cup Recklessness and vanity. Until from his high crest headlong He plummets to dust of hope. That strong is not strong But let no fair ambition be denied; May God protect the wrestler for the State In government, in comely policy. Who will fear God and on His ordinance wait? ” (950-959) Aristotle in his book Poetics says that ‘ a tragic hero must be an important and an ineffectual man who had committed an error in his judgment and who must concourses of his deeds. The tragic hero must learn a lesson from his error in judgment. and become an example for the audience that what happens when a man having higher social and political values fall from his position Oedipus was a good king. The first scene of his essay shows that he was a good man and was a good king. Who really concern about his family and nation, he treated his people as his family and was respected as a father. Headdress them as “my children” Poor children! You may buy surely I know All that you longed for in your coming here. I know that you are deathly sick; and yet. Sick as you are, no one is as sick as i. Each of you suffers in himself alone”(12-17) There was a deadly disease in Thebes by which people were dying all the people gathered before the king and asked for help from the king, Oedipus has saved them from sphinx they were hopeful that he will save them from this disease. he says that he has already sent Creon to get some help from Apollo(Prophet). He then says that they are not only suffering, he is also suffering for them their problem is his problem. This shows that Oedipus is a good king. Oedipus is also a morally good personality, to a great extent. It is so good of him to try to avoid the unbearable fate that he hears of we see that Oedipus is not only too confident in his own analysis and understanding of reality, he is also always afraid of doing wrong, He is adamant in his quest for the truth and the welfare of the people. He surrenders to the power of fate at the end. He is of respectful towards the oracles, in the sense that he has been afraid of what they have told him, and he does respect Tiresias before he is insulted by the apparently unjust and false charges against him. He asks for Tiresias’s help. He says that he is blind but he can see what they cannot see even having eyes to see. Tiresiasrefuse to help him. This makes Oedipus angry and he insults the Blind Prophet, calling him sightless, witless, senseless, mad old man. “What a wicked old man you are! You’d try a stone’s Patience! Out with it! Have you no feeling at all? ” Oedipus is an arrogant man, he gets angry fast and in his anger, he makes decisions that are not good for him. Obviously, pride is his hamartia. He is too proud and arrogant and presumes too much about his own understanding and his powers to control his life. He is also proud of being aking and having all the powers to himself. This term is known as “hamartia”..”Where power and throne are mines, ever to receive that man”. In his excessive pride he blames Creon, who is so loyal to him, he says that Creon and Tiresias have conspired against him and they want his throne. Creon tells him that he is wrong and he must not doubt his loyalties towards him but Oedipus is a man who listens to no one and does what he think is right. He says that if this is true and they have conspired against him he will kill both of them. But in the end, his wife and his mother committed suicide. This shows that he is an impurity in the land of Thebes and he talks his eyes out and went towards the mountains

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