Oedipus the king: Analysis essay

This great Greek tragedy story of Oedipus the King depicts a quintessential lesson that life teaches in general about one's fate, and the irony of life itself. Oedipus' and his parents' attempt to evade the tragic, the shockingly mysterious, and the sad fate of Oedipus' unknowingly murder of his biological father Laius and marriage to his birth mother Jocasta was inevitable. Ironically, however, in the beginning it seemed as if their fates would be deviated to a more prosperous setting once Oedipus' parents killed him. As one reads through the play it is evidently accurate to say that the gods hold all the keys to every mortal's future, and once one's future is unlocked, even though man can manipulate its path, the final destination remains unequivocally absolute. It is suspiciously affirmative that the herdsman, just like Oedipus' all the citizens of Thebes, was assigned a fate by the gods to be Oedipus' savior. An analytic journey through the play will give an overview of how Sophocles, the author, blends in fate and irony in this tragedy.

There are a lot of areas in the play filled with both fate and irony. Both factors will be analyzed side-by-side because they both complement each other in various ways. For example, as assessed in the work Analysis essay by Jeffrey L. Buller; it is so ironic that, Tiresias a prophet, the character who is blind can "see" the truth much more clearly than can Oedipus, who prided himself on his "insight." Oedipus cast a curse on his predecessor's slayer after Creon's, Oedipus' brother-in-law, feedback from Apollo, a Greek god, on the reasons why the gods had cast a plague on the land and the citizens of Thebes. Little did he know that, he was cursing himself as he uttered those words of his long prayer, as revealed in episode one of the play. The irony of the fact that Oedipus eventually fled to his unknown home, after a drunken man revealed that he was a bastard child, implicitly displays how one single day (night at the bar) ignited the flames of questions of his not so apparent past and fate.

The conversation between Oedipus and Tiresias as the prophet revealed that he was the murderer of Laius, in lines 446-449, reveals a correlation on the irony of his life and how his fate would finally surreptitiously enter his somewhat prosperous and harmonious life, and literally ruin him. In lines 452-467, as Tiresias discloses Oedipus' real past and fate, the beginning of the end and final destination of Oedipus true destiny inevitably starts to unfold. His pride and inquisitiveness fuels a raging fire in him to find out the truth about Laius' death to make sure that he isn't the actual murder of his predecessor. At some point in the play (line 950) a false interpretation of Oedipus the King's fate momentarily diminishes his suspicions of him being the killer, when a messenger reveals (line 940) that his 'supposed' father from the city where he had fled to avoid his tragic fate was deceased. After he confessed to the messenger that he was glad that he had no part in his father's death, and that the oracle foretold a false future, the messenger disclosed that he is not the biological son of his parents from the place where he had fled years ago.

The chorus, in lines 1192-1196, describes how ironic it is to live a lie for so long and plunge to sorrow and ruination in the end. This is in reference to Oedipus' life. In conclusion Oedipus' and his parents' attempt to evade the tragic, the shockingly mysterious, and the sad fate of Oedipus' unknowingly murder of his biological father Laius and marriage to his birth mother Jocasta was inevitable. No matter how hard his parents or he himself tried to break the chains of his destiny he failed miserably.

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