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Oedipus As King Of Thebes Essay

1162 words - 5 pages

Another example of the consequence of pride and how man is tied to it, even as it spells out his own destruction can be cited in the story of Oedipus the king by Sophocles. Set in the city of Thebes, the story of Oedipus depicts Oedipus as a ruler who is a tyrant lacking any respect for those around him especially the prophet Tiresias. The issue of pride in Oedipus is illustrated when he refuses to heed to plight of Tiresias, who warns him about inquiring into the truth concerning the killer of the Laius the former king of Thebes (Od.360-371). However, in an attempt to ratify the situation concerning a curse that had befallen the city due it harboring the murderer of Laius. Consequently ...view middle of the document...

Refusing to heed Tiresias warning concerning investigating the matter and refusing to believe his prophecy Oedipus mocks him saying “but not for you; it has no strength for you because you are blind in mind and ears as well as in your eyes.” (Od. 426-430). Wrought with arrogance and disbelieve Oedipus not only goes further to investigate to discredit Tiresias but he also brings charges against Tiresias and Creon who is his cousin, accusing them of plotting against him: “You, sir, how is it you come here? Have you so much brazen faced daring that you venture in my house although you are proved manifestly the murderer of that man, and though you tried, openly, highway robbery of my crown? (Od. 610-620) .The issue that Oedipus brings before Creon and Tiresias concerning a plot over his throne, shows the level of hubris that he possessed as a man. His belief in himself as an infallible person, one who is constantly the envy and target of others would not only lead to Oedipus’s destruction in terms of him gouging out his own eyes but will also lead to the curse being lifted up from the city of Thebes. Thus in the fulfillment of the prophecy, Oedipus even though moved constantly by his own pride serves a greater purpose much like Achilles and Hector. This noble effect that occurs as an offspring, or child of the Oedipus is discussed by author Peter J. Ahrensdorf, as he writes:
“But in saving thebes, even though he was a way farer without any evident interest or obligation to the city, he displayed not only wisom or nobility. Early in the play, Oedipus appeals to Terisus self-interest and sense of civiv duty by urging him to help the city to which he belongs and “ which reared you” (310-13, 322-23). But Oedipus original intervention to save thebes cannot been motivated by any self interest or duty. it seems rather to be an act of sheer generousity, a vivid expression of his conviction that “to benefit a man from what one has and can do is the noblest of toils” (776).
Peter Ahrensdorf recounts Oedipus bid to save the city of Thebes as one not based on personal profit but a generous reach. Thus one can conclude that regardless of the fact that Oedipus became a tyrant fueled by pride he...

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