Oedipus the King

Oedipus the King is a play with Greek influences that some may need to take the time to learn more about in order to understand the origin of the play in further context. A general idea of the storyline includes learning about a strong man named Oedipus. He was walking along the side of a road when he was nearly run over by a man who is rich. This leads to the two men fighting with the rich man dying at the end of the battle. Oedipus continues on down the road and runs into a Sphinx that made people solve riddles before they could go further on the road. He answered it correctly and was crowned King of Thebes.

The play fast forwards to ten years later after Oedipus becomes king. There is a Chorus of citizens in unison about problems and concerns within their town. King Oedipus wants to help but Olympian Gods are not happy about the murder of their previous king and why it has been left unsolved. Kind Oedipus claims the killer will be brought to justice and punished no matter who they are. Then Oedipus learns from a psychic that he is the killer of the previous king and gives other disturbing news about him killing his father and marring his mother.

Oedipus was disturbed upon learning such claims but was haunted because he had learned years ago from prophesy that he would indeed murder his father and marry his mother, but he ran away upon learning this at a younger age. He later learned his father was dead and at this time Oedipus is married. He began to worry when his wife told him he had nothing to worry about and that sometimes such prophecies are not true. Later he learns from a shepherd about a baby that was found in the woods and taken back to Corinth where he was from to be raised by adopted parents.

Oedipus later put the pieces of the puzzle together to determine the man he had a fight with a while back on the side of the road was his father. He married the previous king’s wife who turned out to be his biological mother. The Chorus is in disbelief and pity as his biological mother hung herself and Oedipus took pins from her dress and gauged his eyes out with them.

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