Oedipus The King, Oedipus ' Downfall And Lack Of Divine Attributes

1461 Words May 9th, 2016 6 Pages
In Sophocles Oedipus the King, Oedipus’ downfall was a result of the sin of hubris, as he believed that he obtained attributes of divinity, which blinded him from the truth.
Through evaluation and analysis of literary criticisms on Oedipus the King, it is shown that the reason for Oedipus’ downfall was his hubris and lack of divine attributes.
Oedipus assumed he acquired the divine attributes making him further from the truth and nearer to his downfall. He thought that by being a king the attributes came with the title. “these attributes of divinity – knowledge, certainty, justice – are all qualities Oedipus thought he possessed – and that is why he was the perfect example of the inadequacy of human knowledge, certainty, and justice” (Bernard Knox). Oedipus’ certainty of knowledge stems from his encounter with the Sphinx making him believe he could solve any riddles in his life including Laius’ murder. His belief of certainty of knowledge also was initiated by his inflated ego, which caused him to sin. With the sin of hubris, Oedipus also assumed he could administer fair justice to any situation, even when he had no knowledge pertaining to the matter. This attribute can be easily depicted during the investigation of Laius’ death. Along with his belief that he was to administer justice and having the certainty of his own knowledge, Oedipus made rash and impulsive decisions throughout the play. These actions led to Oedipus’…
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