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The last[1] of the Theban trilogy of plays by Sophocles (preceded by Oedipus the King and Oedipus at Colonus). Antigone follows the fate of the daughter of Oedipus.

The play starts with Antigone bringing her sister, Ismene, terrible news. Between the end of Oedipus at Colonus and the start of Antigone, Polynices led an army against Eteocles for the right to inherit his father's throne. The brothers took each other's lives. This was chronicled in the play The Progeny; sadly, only a single exchange survives of that play. It can be read here. Creon, now undisputed master of Thebes once more, has ordered that Polynices be left unburied as a traitor. Antigone asks her sister to help her bury their brother properly, but Ismene refuses, and Antigone does it by herself.

Unfortunately, she is caught, and Creon orders her walled up in a cave to die. Despite warnings from both the Chorus and Tiresias that leaving the dead unburied will have terrible consequences, it is not until Tiresias predicts that Creon's family will suffer and armies will march against Thebes that he relents. Unfortunately, he's too late, as the time spent burying the body prevented Creon and his helpers to reach Antigone before she hanged herself. Seeing he was too late, Haemon, her fiance and Creon's son, stabbed himself, and when THAT news reached his mother, Eurydice, she stabbed herself. The play ends with Creon leaving the stage a broken man.


This play contains examples of:

Notes

  1. story-wise; it was the first one written
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