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Oedipus Rex Character Analysis

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patrick welna

on 23 July 2013

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Transcript of Oedipus Rex Character Analysis

Oedipus The King
Jocasta Analysis
Creon The Ultimate King
Creon has a big role, he is introduced in the beginning of the story as the messenger
He has self control
His character is a very good brother-in-law (also uncle)
He argues with Oedipus that he does not what to be king: "Consider, first. if you think any one would choose to rule and fear rather than rule and sleep untroubled by a fear if power were equal in both case." (681-684)
Creon is a loyal man and he keeps his word
He basically has the same amount of power as Oedipus
In the end you can see he is forgiving and humble
The Herdsmen and The Priest of Zeus
The Messengers
Tiresias


Work cited
Small role in the story, but still very significant
There are two herdsmen : the Theban and the Corinth herdsmen
The Theban herdsman was ordered by Jocasta to kill Oedipus
He could not kill the baby because it was too cruel therefore he gave it to the Corinth herdsman.
This herdsman gave the baby to King Polybus and his wife Merope
The herdsmen later witnessed the death of King Liaus and did nothing about it which helped Oedipus once again.
This is significant because the herdsman thought he did a good deed but it actually became a negative and disastrous thing
The herdsmen
Was only shown in the prologue of the play
He serves as the character foil of the protagonist, Oedipus
The Priest requests an audience with King Oedipus regarding the downfall of their city
The Priest talks highly about Oedipus as being the savior of the city and as being the " Greatest in all men's eyes" (46)
The priest was old in age (wise) which is most likely the reason why he was chosen to speak.
Jocasta is introduced as the queen of Thebes with her late husband King Laius
Received prophecy of how there son was destined to kill this father and lay with his mother
She believed that her husband died by a band of thieves and her son was killed on that hillside
Jocasta could be seen as a maternal and spousal figure in the play
Her spousal instinct comes through the argument when Thebes and Oedipus
At the moment of realization her maternal instinct had taken over
" O Oedipus, God help you!/ God keep you from the knowledge of who you are!" (1222-1223)
"Relief of a Herdsman." Artwork of the Day RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 July 2013.
Role: Messengers are there to bring news about offstage events.
The messenger brought news that Polybus is dead and that Oedipus should be the next king and that Polybus is not the real father and Oedipus is from Thebes.
He creates suspense because now Oedipus' prophecy might still come true.
Messenger 1
Messenger 2
Role: He brings news about what happens to Jocasta and Oedipus. He is a servant for Jocasta and is from Thebes
He is there so when they are on the stage they won't have to show any gore when Oedipus stabs his eyes.
The Priest of Zeus
"Priest of Zeus at the Temple Sold by Sotheby's, New York, on Friday, January 27, 2006." Priest of Zeus at the Temple Sold by Sotheby's, New York, on Friday, January 27, 2006. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 July 2013.
"Oedipus the King Notes on Characters." BookRags. BookRags, n.d. Web. 06 July 2013.

Sophocles, and E. H. Plumptre. Oedipus Rex: (Oedipus the King). Stilwell, KS: Digireads.com Publishing, 2005.




Tieresias is introduced in the play as a man who is physically blind but has the ability to see the future
He is only shown in the beginning of the play when he is arguing with Oedipus and Oedipus accuses him of treason
Shows the anger and capability of Oedipus that he could commit the murders at the crossroads because Tieresias shows Oedipus' temper to the audience
Does not want to comply with Oedipus because he believes it is not his duty to ruin the fate of Oedipus
"It is not fate that I should be your ruin,/ Apollo is enough; it is his care/ to work this out" (436-438)
Both Jocasta and Oedipus seem skeptical of his prophecies which shows the overall blindness of the characters in the play.
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