1008 Words5 Pages
Antigone, by Sophocles, is a story about the struggle between Antigone, who represents the laws of the gods and Creon, who represents the laws of the state. The play takes place circa 442 B.C. in the city-state of Thebes. The story revolves around the burial of Polyneices. Polyneices led an army against his brother, Etocles, the King of Thebes. They killed each other in battle and the new king, Creon, made a decree that only Etocles was to be buried because Polyneices was his rival. Antigone, sister of Polyneices and Etocles, feels that she needs to bury Polyneices in accordance to Zeus’ law, but this went against Creon’s decree. Also, Antigone has to bury Polyneices without the help of her sister…show more content…
After Creon’s wife, Eurydice, found out her son was dead, she stabbed herself to death.
Creon is not wholly wrong in forbidding people to bury Polyneices. His intentions are good because he wanted to show how evil Polyneices was in attacking the city and that in order for the government of Thebes to work, they have to stay united. According to Creon, “For I- be Zeus my witness, who sees all things always- would not be silent if I saw ruin, instead of safety, coming to the citizens; nor would I ever deem the country’s foes a friend to myself; remembering this, that our country is the ship that bears us safe, and that only while she prospers in our voyage can we make true friends”(Sophocles, page 121).
Creon justifies his position to the others in the play by stating that Polyneices was evil and it would be unjust to Etocles, who died with honor, to share a spot in the earth with an evil person like Polyneices.(Sophocles, page 129). Creon states, “…Polyneices, who came back from exile and sought to consume utterly with fire the city of his fathers and the shrines of his fathers’ gods, sought to taste of kindred blood and to lead the remnant into slavery…”(Sophocles, page 121). Creon also states, “A foe is never a friend-not even in death”(Sophocles, page 129).
I think Antigone is a righteous martyr for wanting to bury her
Creon as the Hero of Sophocles' Antigone Essay
1624 Words7 Pages
Creon as the Hero of Antigone
The dilemma of identifying the true hero, or heroine, of Sophocles’ Antigone has tortured students for years. It is indeed a difficult decision to make. The basis for this decision is what the reader perceives to be Sophocles’ dramatic issue in this play. The dramatic issue of the play is twofold: Antigone is a fanatic who is driven by her religious fever to bury the body of her criminal brother, Polyneices, against the edict of Creon. In the second part, Sophocles shows how the new King Creon’s refusal to change his decision in the face of adversity is admirable, but at the same time his political morals end up destroying his family. His fall from grace is tragic, whereas Antigone's fall is…show more content…
"It will be good to die, so doing (burying Polyneices). I shall lie by his side, loving him as he has loved me; I shall be a criminal- but a religious one" (Soph. Ant. 82-85), she confides to Ismene, her sister. This is her attitude throughout the play: bravado in the face of the death sentence she brought upon herself, unreasonably enthusiastic about the prospect of her own death. Even at the ultimate moment, she has no fear of what death will bring. "When I come to that other world my hope is strong that my coming will be a welcome to my father, and dear to you, my mother, and dear to you, my brother deeply loved" (Soph. Ant. 951-955). According to Jebb, she is "possessed by a burning indignation" (Jebb 1902 p.12) and it is this passion which clouds her vision. Antigone's defense that she is acting in the name of the gods has no basis in the reality of the play because there is no evidence of the gods taking part in the underlying actions of the play.
Antigone’s zealous behavior is the antithesis of Creon’s logical arguments. When Antigone is arrested and brought before Creon, her statements allude to a conspiracy set up against her:
Antigone: I know that I will die –of course I do –even if you had not doomed me by proclamation. (Here she believes that Creon