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Word Count: 708
Through the character of Oedipus Sophocles shows the futility and consequences of defying the divine order Oedipus served Thebes as a great ruler loved by his subjects but it is his one tragic flaw hubris which dooms his existence regardless of the character attributes that make him such a beloved king Because of this and through examples it can be shown that Oedipus brings himself to ruin perhaps of judgment errors caused by weakness in character From the opening dialogue we sense the character of Oedipus When confronted by his subjects praying for relief of the plague he reacts kingly and graciously saying You may count on me I am ready to do anything to help Page 2 He obviously cares for the people in his kingdom but he goes on to say I would be insensitive to pain if I felt no pity for my people seated here Page 2 The pity he feels is rooted not only in his love and sympathy but his arrogance as well Perhaps this attitude is duly justified for Oedipus had solved the Sphinxs riddle an apparently heroic feat and was seen to be world-famous Oedipus but the leader that he had become still possessed the hubristic tendencies which doomed him from the time he fled Corinth It is impossible to speculate what may have happened to Oedipus had he stayed in Corinth but it is the attempt to avoid his fate that dooms him not only to fulfill the prophecy but to suffer yet greater consequences To think that he himself has the power to circumvent the prediction from the Oracle of Apollo shows that he did not feel humbled before Apollo Punishment for this lack of faith takes the form of the plague that Apollo imposes on Thebes The death of Laius at the crossroads was caused in part at least because Oedipus left Corinth Speculation as to whether Oedipus would have killed him anyway is
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