The Characters of Antigone and Creon in Antigone by Sophocles

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The Characters of Antigone and Creon in Antigone by Sophocles

Antigone is story of divine retribution and human imperfectness. In this tragedy a powerful king, Creon is brought down by the Gods because of his contempt against their divine laws and true justice is shown to triumph at the end. Creon makes the mistake of putting his personal views over and above the divine laws and fails in the eyes of the Gods. He makes the mistake of testing the Gods' power and the remaining story is basically the degeneration of Creon. After the 'crime' of Antigone, Creon is increasingly shown to be lone warrior in his cause and family and well wishers start deserting him. As the tragedy progresses Creon becomes
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Both are to some extent right in their thinking but in the end both are shown to be mere humans in the eyes of God and fail to rise beyond their puny existence.

At the beginning of the play, Thebes has fought back an armed attack and the brothers, Eteocles and Polynices have died ;Creon crowns himself the king and issues edicts to proclaim Eteocles a hero to be buried with full military honours and decrees that the body of the traitor, Polynices' be refused burial and left to rot. He issues warns that any person disobeying his edicts will be put to death. However, his edicts clash with the divine laws which explicitly state that every dead body deserves a burial, even that of a traitor. Creon thus starts the chain of his own destruction. He considers himself to be paramount in his ideals and expects everyone to obey his edicts without question. And for this, he is willing to risk everything he has :- his prestige, his son, throne and his own life at the altar of his pride. And in the end, he loses.

The Gods however give a number of chances to Creon to remedy his folly of judgement but he misses every one of them. When Creon gets the news of Polynices' burial he hastily judges that the sentry or the sentries have been bribed and is on the verge of having the latter tortured or even killed. In his illogical state of mind he accuses the Chorus of lunacy and illogical behaviour

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