The classic Greek play Antigone, written by Sophocles illustrates the traits that the quintessential tragic hero displays. Antigone stands poised at the river separating herself from civil disobedience. She puts aside the grave fear of consequence to traverse the bridge between. Enraptured in her "duty" to bury her denounced brother, Antigone is overwhelmed by her own stubbornness, and her recalcitrant ways lead to a tragic downfall. .
Antigone obstinately refuses to compromise with her sister, Ismene, whom when she first learns of her brother's death, feels no need to defy Creon's edict. When Ismene suggests to Antigone that she "is in love with the impossible (line 104)," she quickly refutes her by stating "No suffering of mine will be enough to make me die ignobly (line 113)." In this ephemeral encounter with her sister, it becomes apparent that Antigone is unreserved about her feelings. Antigone's tragic flaw is delineated through her unwillingness to hear other's opinions.
Antigone's unrepressed emotions give voice to her dissatisfaction with Creon's dictum. Because of her convictions, Antigone gets herself in the precarious position of facing Creon's wrath. Yet still she does not repent of her impulsive decision to bury her brother. "There is nothing shameful in burying my brother (line 555). The God of death demands these rites for both (line 570)." Antigone's morals render her unable to see her tragic flaw. .
Antigone's death is marked not marked by her insolence toward Creon, but rather by her failure to reason with her emotions. Antigone impels Creon by defying his order, and seals the fate of her life. Instead of obeying Creon's edict, her convictions overcome her and she becomes preoccupied with the thought of her brother's burial. Antigone's failure to reason with herself, Ismene, or Creon illustrates her tragic flaw, the same flaw that leads her to an abrupt end.
By Sophoclean definition, Antigone is deemed a tragic hero because she is unable to discern her tragic flaw.