The Tragic hero & The Oedipus
Oedipus Rex is not only the greatest play of Sophocles but also the greatest Greek play. Aristotle, in the poetics, gives very high praise to the play. According to Aristotle, the tragic hero is a highly esteemed and prosperous man who falls into misfortune because of some serious hamartia. He particularly gives the example of Oedipus. Oedipus is closely the intermediate kind of person stipulated by Aristotle, not much wicked, not much virtuous. The complete reversal in his fate is always done, obviously because of hamartia that is accomplished by moral faults in his character and errs of judgment. Oedipus has a high position of some extraordinary qualities that make him above the common run of man. He asserts in the start, “I, Oedipus who bear the famous name”.
Priest of Zeus calls him “Great Oedipus; ‘O powerful King’, ‘A king of wisdom’, ‘Noblest of men’, and assures him that ‘no man question your power to rule the land’ 2.
Oedipus, being a powerful king and mater of intellect thinks that he can solve every problem. He saved Thebans from the cruel monster (Sphinx) and Thebans believes that he would rescue them from the present suffering of terrible plague, and bring the city back to life. Thebans call him the riddle solver. All these assurances make him over confident. 3.
Oedipus sense of thinking is suppressed by the fits of temper, and he ignores certain facts, which are quite apparent. That is why; he does not pay any attention to the prediction make by Teiresias; although he gives important clue about Oedipus’ identity: Oedipus is the most knowledgeable person but becomes the most ignorant. There are some fundamental errors of thinking and judging in him. 4.
His tragedy is greater than his fame and honor. His great mind was like a strong bow from where the arrows of solution and knowledge used to draw and aim at the right target, but now he and his mind’s glory are down because of his tragic flaw. He is now, in a state,...
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