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Dialectic Journal on Antigone: A Passage by Antigone

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From Sophocles’ Antigone, written in about 442 B.C., and which centers on the Theban legend after the end of the reign of King Oedipus, one of the passages point to the center character, Antigone, when King Creon starves her to death for disobeying his command and offering burial rights to her brother, Polynices.  At the start of the fifth episode, just before the blind prophet Tiresias arrives, Antigone states the following lines:

Unwept, without a friend,

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Unwed, and whelmed in woe,

I journey on the road that open lies.

No more shall it be mine (O misery!)

To look upon the holy eye of day,

And yet, of all my friends,

Not one bewails my fate,

No kindly tear is shed.

(Sophocles L1009-16)

This passage comes just right after Haemon arrives and proclaims to his father, King Creon, that the whole city believes Antigone to be innocent.  Despite Haemon’s plea, King Creon orders that Antigone be put in a cave and let her starve to death.

Thus, the passage reflects Antigone being sad and utterly bereft.  She struggles to endure her trial, even without a friend.  She finds herself in anguish, even without a husband, since they say that anguish for a woman begins by the birth of the first child.  She finds herself journeying in a world full of lies—where truth happens to be a mere myth.  Because she is soon to die, she will no longer witness the majesty of the day, or the brightness of the sun.  Yet the most difficult and tragic part of it is that no friend or family sheds a tear for her.  She appears to be all alone, suffering in anguish for doing what is supposedly right in the eyes of the gods.

Works Cited

  1. Sophocles. “Antigone.” The Harvard Classics 8.6 (1914). 2001. Bartleby.com. 7 April 2008 <http://www.bartleby.com/8/6/>.

Cite this Dialectic Journal on Antigone: A Passage by Antigone

Dialectic Journal on Antigone: A Passage by Antigone. (2016, Jul 03). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/dialectic-journal-on-antigone-a-passage-by-antigone-lines-1009-16/

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