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A Character Profile of Oedipus

  • Date Submitted: 03/28/2011 01:51 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 53 
  • Words: 436
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Oedipus is the begotten son of King Lauis and Queen Jocasta of Thebes; forsaken at birth, left to die on the side of the mountain, miraculously discovered by a farmer and saved from his fate, bred by the side of the King and Queen of Corinth, learned of the terrible prophecy and sought to rid himself of the curse, killed a company of travellers, saved Thebes from the Sphinx, became King, married the Queen, and ultimately caused his own demise by walking with his eyes closed. His character goes through numerous stages of development, but the focus is on his attributes as an adult during the actual play. His qualities and character are only partially shaped by his upbringing, and more so by the will of the Gods, who fated his destiny. The curse stated that the, “First son of the King and Queen of Thebes would kill his father and marry his mother”. In order for this to happen, Oedipus’ character had to be pertinent to his destiny, and therefore had to possess certain qualities. Oedipus was a belligerent, strong, up and frontal, loud mouthed leader not only by brood, but by fate.

His loud-mouthed character aspect comes from the many conversations he has with others, such as the responses he gives to the prophet Tiresias, who tells him that he, Oedipus, is the cause of the famine and pestilence clouding Thebes; which to this, Oedipus replies, “You dare say it! Have you no shame at all? And do you expect to escape the consequences?” From this outburst, it is seen that Oedipus is clearly very dissent to the acclaimed prophet, and seems to command utmost respect over his subjects. Initially however, before turning bitter to Creon and Tiresias, Oedipus was a grandiose King of Thebes, and was eminently popular amongst his royal subjects and commands authority.

Oedipus was also a very determined person, shown by his devotion and incessancy about finding the killer of Lauis. In this is also a slight sense of irony: Oedipus insists that he wants to find Lauis’ killer...

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