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One of the key purposes of using the prophecies is to reveal to the readers at the outset itself, the course, the work or the main protagonist will take. Although, it may reveal the crux of the plot, on the other level, it will heighten the curiosity of the readers regarding whether the prophecies will come true or how the prophecies will come true. Another key perspective of using prophecies is to state the fact that human lives will always be controlled by superior powers or external forces, without any chance of them controlling it. This perspective of prophecy was aptly used in the Greek works, Oedipus the King and The Odyssey. This paper will discuss how the lives of the main protagonists Oedipus and Odysseus were dictated by these prophecies, with Oedipus’ prophecies leading to his downfall and tragedy, while prophecies for Odysseus leading to success.
Oedipus fate, it seems, has been sealed even before he is born, with the prophecy coming from Oracle of Apollo at Delphi. As King Laius and Jocasta did not have any children after many years of marriage, they consulted the Oracle at Delphi regarding their childlessness. The Oracle gave out the prophecy that if Jocasta bears a son, that son would kill her husband King Laius and will also marry her. This prophecy was recollected by Jocasta later, “An oracle once came to Laius declaring he was doomed/To perish by the hand of his own son, A Child that should be born to him by me” (Sophocles 51). To prevent his prophecy from actualizing only Oedipus was ordered to be killed. However, he survives and was cared by King Polybus of Corinth and his wife Merope, who raise him as their own.
After hearing rumors that Polybus and Merope are not his real biological parents, he coincidently meets the same Oracle at Delphi to clarify his doubts. Without directly answering Oedipus’ question on parentage, the Oracle again repeats the earlier prophecy but in different words, from the perspective of Oedipus. Oedipus
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Normally the waves of the ocean remain within the boundary of the ocean. But at times, they assume violent form and cause all-round, unimaginable devastation. Similarly, the mind that has lost control does actions that it will not normally do. This can happen with the best of human beings, those who are normally good natured, and very good at heart.
It gives the reader and the characters, the glimpse of the future. It also often times drive the characters towards their goals or towards madness to fulfill the prophecies. Prophecy is a central part of Oedipus the King, Macbeth and Sundiata. All the three works are written by different writer at different times but their use of prophesies all linked them together.
The importance of this play can be seen from the significance that it was given by Aristotle, one of the earliest literary critics in history. The story forms, chronologically, the first part of the Theban plays. The character of Oedipus has been used by thinkers like Sigmund Freud to explain theories of psychoanalysis as well.
“Oedipus the King” is a play in which Oedipus is the focal character, and is represented as the most terrible hero. Oedipus is shaped as an attractive personality that has many characteristics, both good and bad.
They want the king to provide a solution to the situation, and replies by telling them that he had sent his brother, creon, to the oracle to find out what was the problem (Grene 12). When Creon comes from the oracle, he conveys the message that the plague will terminate on condition that those involved in the murderer of the former King of the land receives punishment for his deeds.
For example, tragedies in the stories of the most renowned writers such as Sophocles’ Oedipus the King and Chinua Achebe’s Okonkwo: Things Fall Apart could prime and stain memorable lessons with emotional states to the readers. Hereby, these stories could truly declare the mystery of time which beheaded the fate of the protagonists.
The play also depicts the theme of prophecy and predestination. According to the play, the people of Thebes believed that their gods predetermined their future. On the other hand, Oedipus believed that an individual had the ability to control his future through positive thinking. Thus, the play depicts conflicts between reality and prophecies.
Outline: Introduction I. Sophocles’ Oedipus: A Tragic Hero II. Tragedy III. Plot IV. Virtue and Morality Conclusion References Sophocles’ Oedipus 2 Sophocles’ Oedipus Introduction Sophocles’ Oedipus is one of the most well-known tragic heroes in the history of drama.
Even after the father of Oedipus decides to kill his son to avoid this wrath, Oedipus survives and fulfills the prophesy of the oracle. In his capacity, when he learns that his foster parents are not his real parents, he decides to inquire from the oracle about his parents.
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