Filled with passionate monologues and sensitive probing of moral and philosophical issues, this powerful drama reveals the grim fate that befalls the children of Oedipus. When Antigone, the daughter of Oedipus, chooses to obey the law of the gods rather than an unconscionable command from Creon, ruler of Thebes, she is condemned to death. How the gods take their revenge on Creon provides the gripping denouement to this compelling tragedy, still one of the most frequently performed of classical Greek dramas.
In his long life, Sophocles wrote more than one hundred plays. Of these, seven complete tragedies remain, among them the famed Oedipus Rex and Oedipus at Colonus. In Antigone, he reveals the fate that befalls the children of Oedipus. With its passionate speeches and sensitive probing of moral and philosophical issues, this powerful drama enthralled its first Athenian audiences and won great honors for Sophocles.
The setting of the play is Thebes. Polynices, son of Oedipus, has led a rebellious army against his brother, Eteocles, ruler of Thebes. Both have died in single combat. When Creon, their uncle, assumes rule, he commands that the body of the rebel Polynices be left unburied and unmoored, and warns that anyone who tampers with his decree will be put to death.
Antigone, sister of Polynices, defies Creon's order and buries her brother, claiming that she honors first the laws of the gods. Enraged, Creon condemns her to be sealed in a cave and left to die. How the gods take their revenge on Creon provides the gripping denouement to this compelling tragedy, which remains today one of the most frequently performed of classical Greek dramas.
Antigone is the first of the trilogy also containing Oedipus at Colonus, and Oedipus Rex. The trilogy is also known as the Theban Trilogy, or the Oedipus Trilogy.
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