Oedipus the King a Tragic Hero

936 Words Nov 28th, 2011 4 Pages
Marietta Shaw
English 1302-6504 Mrs.Weatherford
21 November 2011
A Tragic Hero Indeed! In Sophocles tragedy Oedipus the King, King Oedipus swears to solve the murder of former King Laios in order to free the city from the plague. The plague taunts the city destroying crops and livestock and making the women unable to bear children. A seer, Teirsias tells Oedipus that he himself is Thebes’s pollution for killing his father and marrying his mother. Oedipus ignores his words and is blind to the truth until he discovers that it is he who corrupts the city. In order to illustrate Oedipus as the perfect Aristotelian tragic hero, the reader must examine his noble stature that gives him authority, his hamartia resulting in his downfall,
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Now Oedipus has to live the rest of his life in vein because he was running from something that was destined to happen. Aristotle also believes that the punishment exceeds the crime (“Tragedy and Comedy” 1212). When Oedipus finds his mother and wife Iocaste dead from hanging herself he takes his takes his own sight, Choragos sees Oedipus and asks “what daemon leaped on your life with heavier punishment than a mortal man can bear” (Exodos 75-77). Choragos sees the pain and agony the Oedipus has to endure for the rest of his life and acknowledges the fact that Oedipus is strong to have been through so much. He sees that Oedipus has wronged because he didn’t know but he still has to suffer the consequences which is more in his eyes than a man can take. Aristotle’s theory of a tragic hero seems to have come directly from viewing Sophocles tragedy Oedipus the King. Oedipus is the perfect example of an Aristotelian tragic hero. Oedipus possesses all of the attributes mentioned in Aristotle’s theory he was a king who has it all and is the cause of his tragic
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