Synopsis of Oedipus Rex

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Boyuan Liu Professor Anita Adcock Theatre Art 005 September 19, 2014 Synopsis of Oedipus Rex By Sophocles 1. Main Characters Oedipus, King of Thebes --- Protagonist Jocasta, Wife and Mother of Oedipus and Queen of Thebes Creon, Brother of Jocasta Tiresias, Blind Prophet of Thebes Laius, Father of Oedipus and former King of Thebes (Always mentioned but no appearance) Phorbas, Shepherd of King Laius Messenger from Corinth Chorus of Theban Elders 2. Plot A terrible plague strikes Thebes. Chorus of Thebans gather in front of the palace to call upon their King Oedipus, putting their last hope of survival on him. Oedipus has sent Creon, his brother-in-law, to the house of Apollo to ask help from the oracle. And now, Creon returns with the instruction: Thebes will be cured of the plague, as soon as the killer of the previous king, Laius, is caught. After hearing this, Oedipus vows to find out the murderer and punish him. With the suggestion from chorus, Oedipus also summons the blind prophet Tiresias for help. When Tiresias arrives, he claims that even though he knows the truth, he is reluctant to answer. Oedipus is enraged by Tiresias' refusal, and threatens him with death. Finally, Tiresias tells the king that Oedipus himself is just the murderer. Oedipus cannot accept this ridiculous truth. He suspects Creon of murder, and concludes that the prophet had colluded with Creon in an attempt to undermine him. So then they argue vehemently and eventually Oedipus dismisses Tiresias. However, when he leaves, he continues muttering: murderer is right here before him -­ a man who kill his father and marry his mother, a man who can see now but will leave in blindness in the future. Then Creon enters to face Oedipus's accusations. In spite of Creon’s protestations of innocence, the King

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