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Allusions in Antigone
Transcript of Allusions in Antigone
What's with all the
Ancient Greek names are often difficult to comprehend and pronounce... and we're still not sure if we're saying them right.
Zeus: shine, sky
Laius: the Mythical Father of Oedipus
Aphrodite: born from foam
Polynices: the Uncle of Oedipus
Eteocles: the Mythical son of Oedipus
Oedipus: swollen foot
Antigone: against birth
Ares: to riun
Bacchus: to shout
Athena: sharp, praise
Poseidon: husband, lord, earth
Demeter: earth mother
Prometheus: foresight, forethought
And Why Does it Matter??
General Effects of
“And does not Creon treat our brothers twain
One with the rites of burial, one with shame?
Eteocles, so say they, he interred
Fitly, with wonted rites, as one held meet
To pass with honour to the gloom below.
Sophocles. Antigone. The Harvard Classics.
But for the corpse of Polynices, slain
So piteously, they say, he has proclaimed
To all the citizens, that none should give
His body burial, or bewail his fate,”
What are Allusions?
Common Allusions in
“Concerning those two sons of Œdipus.
Eteocles, who died in deeds of might
Illustrious, ﬁghting for our fatherland,
To honour him with sepulture, all rites
Duly performed that to the noblest dead
Of right belong. Not so his brother; him
I speak of, Polynices, who, returned
From exile, sought with ﬁre and sword to waste
His father’s city and the shrines of Gods,
Yea, sought to glut his rage with blood of men,
And lead them captives to the bondslave’s doom;
Him I decree that none should dare entomb,
That none should utter wail or loud lament,
But leave his corpse unburied, by the dogs
And vultures mangled, foul to look upon”
Laius was the son of the king of Thebes Labdacus.
When Laius was young Amphion and Zethus planned on usurping the throne from Labdacus.
Some Thebans wanted to see the line of Cadmus continue so they smuggled Laius out of the city to safe him from Amphion and Zethus.
Laius was took to Peloponnesus where he was welcomed by the King of Pisa. Years later when Laius had grown up he abducted and raped the kings son, taught him how to drive a chariot, and then set off to Thebes with him.
Laius became the king upon his return because Amphion and Zethus had died during his absence.
Laius received an oracle from the prophet Delphi telling him to not have a child or else he will kill him and marry his wife.
One night Laius was drunk and ended up fathering Oedipus with his wife.
When Oedipus was born Laius took Oedipus up to a mountain and tied him down by his ankles expecting him to die. A local shepherd ended up saving Oedipus and then giving him to the king and queen of Corinth who raised Oedipus to adult hood. Oedipus looking to find more information about his parents visited the prophet Delphi, Delphi told him that he must not go home or he will kill his father and marry his mother. Oedipus thinking that Corinth was his home set off to Thebes. Laius on the other hand had received some bad omens indicating that his son might kill him. The two ran into each other on their ways and not knowing who each other were got into an argument about who should give way to who on the road, Oedipus ended up killing his father not knowing it was him. Many of Laius’s descendants died after his death. The reason for this curse is unknown but there are a couple reasons why this curse might have been set. The first possibility would be because he ignored the Oracles warning. Another reason would be because violated the laws of hospitality and marriage when he abducted the king of Pisa’s son and raped him. Other theories are that the entire line of Cadmus has been cursed by either Aires when Cadmus killed his serpent, or by Hephaestus, who resented the fact that Cadmus married Harmonia, the daughter of Ares and Aphrodite.
All of the allusions we see in Antigone are related in some way to the ancient Greek gods. This reinforces the importance of religion in the play and how mortals truly lived by the rules of the gods.
One of 3 brothers: Zuues, Poseidon & Hades
God of the sky; has absolute power
Weapon of choice: thunderbolt
The father of the gods - 70 wives
overall symbol to remember: POWERFUL
Zeus is mentioned
Lord of the Underworld
Ruler of death/dead/dying
watches over only those who have been buried properly
referred to as both a god and a place
people are "sleeping in Hades" when they die
Antigone has a