Oedipus Rex Quotes by Sophocles
The Problem of Choice vs Fate & Determinism In Oedipus Rex
Essay: Oedipus the King: Free Will vs Fate
The ancient Greeks believed that their gods could see the future, and that certain people could access this information. Prophets or seers, like blind Tiresias , saw visions of things to come. Oracles, priests who resided at the temples of gods—such as the oracle to Apollo at Delphi—were also believed to be able to interpret the gods' visions and give prophecies to people who sought to know the future. During the fifth century B. Some of this tension is plain to see in Oedipus Rex , which hinges on two prophecies. The first is the prophecy received by King Laius of Thebes that he would have a son by Queen Jocasta who would grow up to kill his own father.
Sophocles' Oedipus the King: Fate vs. Free Will In Oedipus the King, one of Sophocles' most popular plays, Sophocles clearly depicts the Greek's popular belief.
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Man was free to choose and was ultimately held responsible for his own actions. Although he was a victim of fate, he was not controlled by it. Oedipus was destined from birth to someday marry his mother and to murder his father. This prophecy, as warned by the oracle of Apollo at Delphi was unconditional and inevitably would come to pass, no matter what he may have done to avoid it. His past actions were determined by fate, but what he did in Thebes, he did so of his own will. From the beginning of this tragedy, Oedipus took many actions leading to his own downfall. Oedipus could have waited for the plague to end, but out of compassion for his suffering people, he had Creon go to Delphi.