Oedipus the King

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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"Oedipus the king" is a story written in Greek and translated into many languages like English. Oedipus is the protagonist of this novel and the story begins when king Laius king of Thebes and his wife queen Jocasta received a prophecy from the fire god Apollo that his son will kill him and marry his own mother. To prevent this from happening, Oedipus' father Laius gives an order that the baby must be killed. Ironically the baby wasn't killed and instead he was taken away and given to the king and queen of Corinth, Polybus and Merope. They named him Oedipus, a reference to his feet, which were very swollen.

After many years, Oedipus became a young proud man and one day at a party he heard some murmurs from a drunken man about him being adopted. In his search for the truth, he came across the prophecy about him killing his father and marrying his own mother.

Ironically in his attempt to deny fate, he went back to his homeland, killing a group of people who cut of his way at the crossing of three roads. Then he saved the city of Thebes from a monster called the Sphinx after solving their riddle. In the absence of the king and after saving the people of Thebes, He ended up marrying the queen Jocasta and becoming the king. The play opens with the city facing famine and the only way to save it is by finding the killer of the king Laius. We see Oedipus as a great king trying to save his city but he also was ignorant to the truth.

After the all evidences came up together, and all the roads led to one point, Oedipus realized for his horror the truth for the first time that he's the killer. Jocasta, after knowing the truth could never live facing her husband who turned to be her son neither her children from him, she hanged her self in her room. The king followed her but it was too late, and to punish himself he took her decorative pins and poked his eyes 3 times blinding him self and was punished out of Thebes. He ends up paying a terrible price for invoking the wrath of the Gods.