The True Tragic Hero Of Antigone

1244 words - 5 pages

Has your pride ever stopped you from doing something? In Sophicles play Antigone. The king Creon indirectly kills his whole family by being stubborn and not listening to others opinions. Throughout his journey he displays the characteristics of Aristotle; tragic hero. These include being extraordinary, having good and bad sides, a tragic flaw, becoming aware of his mistakes and failing miserably in the end. Creon evolves a lot in this story and even though it ends tragically, he becomes a better person by the end.
Throughout the story, Creon is depicted as larger than life, an over ruling force. Being the king of Thebes, he holds absolute power and influence over everyone around him. Sometimes Creon uses his power for good, while other times he makes mistakes. He generally tries to do the right thing, but he rules with an iron fist. Creon shows his good side by always trying to do the right thing to put his kingdom ahead, which isn’t always the right thing for his family. He often struggles with choosing between man-made law and divine law. However; Creon has an ugly side as well. He is merciless against people who disobey his laws. In the beginning of Antigone he shows his evil side by demanding that the Sentry find the person who buried Polynices, who he had decreed no one was allowed to give burial rights to.
Upon my oath, I swear,/Zeus is my god above: either you find/the perpetrator of his burial /And bring him here into my sight, or death-/ No, not your mere death shall pay the reckoning, /But, for a living lesson against such infamy,/You shall be racked and tortured till you tell/The whole truth of this outrage;(134, Antigone)

This is an example of Creon being merciless ; he doesn’t give anyone a chance to explain themselves. He doesn’t care that the Sentry had nothing to do with the burial of Polynices. He will execute him if he doesn’t find out who did bury him. He doesn’t care about the people of Thebes he just wants them to abide by his rules.
In addition to ruling with an iron fist, Creon’s other major flaw is having too much Hubris. His pride becomes a problem, when he doesn’t listen to the blind seerer Tieresias, who comes to warn Creon that the gods are unhappy with his choices and if he doesn’t right his wrongs he will have to face grave consequences. “Pay to the dead his due wound not the fallen./ It is the glory to kill and kill again./ My words are for your good and will,/and should be acceptable, being good for you “ (153, Antigone) this shows the gods threats and Tieresias’s clear warning. Creon ignores the warning and tries to make it sound like Tieresias is trying to trick him. “I say prophets seek their own advantage” (154, Antigone) In this line it is made obvious that instead of being open minded and trying to listen, Creon instead tries to blame his wrong doings on others.
Towards the end of the book...

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