The use of irony in sophocles oedipus rex

The Three Types of Irony written by: This article will help you identify the different dramatic ironies of Oedipus Rex as categorized according to verbal, tragic and situational ironies.

The use of irony in sophocles oedipus rex

Highlight and copy the desired format. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 18 1 Abstract Sophocles, one of the most noted playwrights of the ancient world, wrote the tragedy Oedipus Rex in the first half of the decade — bc. A lethal plague is described in The use of irony in sophocles oedipus rex drama.

We adopted a critical approach to Oedipus Rex in analyzing the literary description of the disease, unraveling its clinical features, and defining a possible underlying cause. Our goals were to clarify whether the plague described in Oedipus Rex reflects an actual historical event; to compare it with the plague of Athens, which was described by Thucydides as occurring around the same time Sophocles wrote; and to propose a likely causative pathogen.

Photo courtesy Antonis A. Sophocles is one of the most noted playwrights of the ancient world and, along with Aeschylus and Euripides, belongs to the trinity of the Attic tragedians who flourished during the golden century of Pericles in Athens Figure 1. Sophocles lived between and bc ; although he seems to have written plays, only 7 have survived in a complete form 1.

He lived his entire life in Athens and introduced many innovations in the dramatic arts 1. The play has been labeled an analytical tragedy, meaning that the crucial events which dominate the play have happened in the past 23. Several sections, primarily in the first third of the play, refer to the aforementioned plague; the epidemic, however, is not the primary topic of the tragedy.

The epidemic, in fact, is mostly a matter that serves the theatrical economy by forming a background for the evolution of the plot. Given the potential medical interest of Oedipus Rex, we decided to adopt a critical perspective by analyzing the literary descriptions of the plague, unraveling its clinical features, defining the underlying cause, and discussing possible therapeutic options.

An Epidemic in Oedipus Rex In the first scene of the play, Sophocles presents the basic social and historical axes around which he will unfold the plot. The devastating plague that dominates Thebes is presented to the audience through the dialogue between Oedipus and the Priest lines 1—67 23.

The use of irony in sophocles oedipus rex

The king has already taken some action to deal with this harm by sending his brother-in-law, Creon, to the oracle at Delphi to ask for a salvation plan lines 68— Oedipus asks the citizens to stop praying and focus on finding the cure lines — 23.

In lines — the Chorus stays on stage to summarize the situation and beg for salvation 23. Searching for the miasma, Oedipus summons the blind prophet Tiresias to reveal who is responsible for this evil lines — 23. At the moment that Tiresias reveals to Oedipus that the king himself is the cause of the plague lines —the epidemic becomes a secondary issue, and, as a result, there are only occasional references to the plague during the remainder of the play lines —, —, —, — 23.

Figure 2 Figure 2. Photo courtesy Effie Poulakou-Rebelakou.

The use of irony in sophocles oedipus rex

Therefore, although the first part of the play is rife with references to the plague and its consequences, in the second part there are only sporadic referrals to the epidemic. Sophocles describes the main characteristics of the epidemic through sporadic sentences.

Lines — turn out to be of high interest: The knowledge of the existence of a highly contagious and fatal disease is phrased clearly in these rhymes, strongly suggesting that Thebans were aware of the oncoming—most possibly from the adjacent city of Athens—danger 2 — 4.

This hypothesis regarding the source of the disease seems the most reasonable in medical terms, contrary to the philological approach, which declares that the epidemic derived from the gods.

It is not quite clear why Ares is being called responsible for this plague, since there is no other such reference in the play.

In fact, it is noteworthy that there is no other historic or poetic reference that links Ares to the spreading of a disease 4. Consequently, a solution for the situation is requested from the oracle at Delphi lines 68—72while the Chorus plead for Athena, Zeus, Artemis, and Apollo to save the town from the disaster lines — 23.

The aforementioned aspects strongly support the notion that the disease was incurable at this time. Possible Pathogens Responsible for the Plague in Thebes The pathogen of the plague described in Oedipus Rex reflects the complexity of every historically emerging zoonosis.

Any proposed pathogen should be a highly contagious, zoonotic disease of cattle that causes stillbirth, miscarriages, and infertility, is characterized by high mortality rates, and has the potential to have caused an epidemic in the 5th century bc.

After a close inspection of the characteristics, the pathogens that include most 5 of 7 of the features described by Sophocles in Oedipus Rex are Leishmania spp.

Among the diseases caused by these pathogens that can affect humans are the following: Thus, the most probable cause of the plague in Thebes is B. Brucellosis is a highly contagious zoonosis caused by ingestion of unsterilized milk or meat from infected cows or close contact with their secretions.

Epidemics, stillbirths, and miscarriages caused by B. However, taking into account that in modern times brucellosis in humans is a severe granulomatous disease characterized by extremely rare direct transmission from person-to-person, insidious onset in sporadic cases mainly among veterinariansand low mortality rates, it may be difficult for 21st century physicians and veterinarians to accept B.

In this case scenario, we could assume that cattle in Thebes may have been having brucellosis, leptospirosis, or listeriosis, while humans could have been affected by a different pathogen such as Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi 89.

It should be noted that exploring the diseases of history requires examining the social, economic, and demographic aspects of each era because this is the only way to better understand how diseases work over centuries Finally, we cannot reject the possibility of dealing with a Brucella strain that has evolved to become less deadly than a more lethal ancestor 6.

The following 5 points support this correlation.Oedipus Rexes by Sophocles is truly based entirely of irony. Sophocles was conscious that the dramatic irony would be intertwined throughout the plot to enhance the simple fate of the tragic hero.

The difference between the knowledge of the tragic circumstances and ignorant characters heightens the depth of the tragedy. The plot of Sophocles’ great tragedy Oedipus the King (sometimes known as Oedipus Rex or Oedipus Tyrannos) has long been admired.

In his Poetics, Aristotle held it up as the exemplary Greek tragedy. How fun was it for you to read Oedipus(rex) the king by Sophocles? Which character from the play Antigone by Sophocles did the playwright use to create the climax of the play?

How is the Oedipus Rex by Sophocles fate or free will? Transcript of Irony in Oedipus Rex. Irony What is Dramatic Irony? Sophocles Irony in Oedipus Rex Greek tragedy follows a strict form. Sophocles used that to his advantage. How? He made irony, specifically dramatic irony, run throughout the play Oedipus Rex.

Situational and verbal irony also played key roles in the story as well. Irony (from Ancient Greek εἰρωνεία eirōneía, meaning 'dissimulation, feigned ignorance'), in its broadest sense, is a rhetorical device, literary technique, or event in which what appears, on the surface, to be the case, differs radically from what is actually the case..

Irony can be categorized into different types, including: verbal irony, dramatic irony, and situational irony. Transcript of Irony in Oedipus Rex. Irony What is Dramatic Irony? Sophocles Irony in Oedipus Rex Greek tragedy follows a strict form. Sophocles used that to his advantage. How? He made irony, specifically dramatic irony, run throughout the play Oedipus Rex.

Situational and verbal irony also played key roles in the story as well.

What are some examples of Sophocles’ use of dramatic irony in his play Oedipus Rex? | eNotes