Dramatic Irony in Oedipus Rex

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Dramatic Irony in Oedipus the King “O King Apollo! May Creon us good fortune and rescue, bright as the expression I see on his face” (Sophocles 5). This quote implies dramatic irony because the evident message is that Creon by his face is bringing good news, but we the audience know the hidden message which is that Creon brings a bad prophecy which sets off the story of Oedipus. “For whoever killed Laius might decide to raise his hand against me. So, acting on behalf of Laius, I benefit myself, too” (Sophocles 10). Dramatic irony is presented in this quote unintended because Oedipus is asking the people of Thebes to come forward and tell him who did it, but the intended message is that he did it and he is asking his people. “I pronounce a curse on myself if the murderer should, with my knowledge, share my house; in that case may I be subject to all the curses I have just called down on these people here. I order you all to obey these commands in full for my sake, for Apollo’s sake, and for the sake of this land, withering away in famine, abandoned by heaven” (Sophocles 15). This quote turns out to be dramatic irony because it is evident that he is going to curse himself if he finds out the murderer is closed to him. The hidden message is that he is closer than he thinks because he is the Laius’ murderer. “I call down this curse in the gods’ name: let no crop grow out of the earth for them, their wives bear no children. Rather let them be destroyed by the present plague, or something even worse. But to you people of Thebes who approve of my action I say this: May justice be our ally and all the gods be with us forever” (Sophocles 16). The intended message of this quote is that Oedipus is putting a curse by the gods’ name for whoever killed Laius. The unintended message is that he is cursing himself by no crops growing, their wives not having children or even

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