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Oedipus' Morality

             Oedipus the King, written by Sophocles, is a story about King Oedipus, who became a classic tragic hero. Oedipus’ tragic fall leading to his downfall was not his fault. It was his predestined fate as a murderer that led him into a tragic life and made him suffer badly. Although many people portray and interpret Oedipus as being a man of immoral values, he was by far a very moral man, because of his persistent attempts to save the city of Thebes.
             Oedipus could have been seen as an immoral man by his predestined actions, but it was predetermined by the gods, absolving him of any blame. Oedipus went against the god’s prophecy and tried to out run his fate. Oedipus heard of the prophecy while attending a party with his adopted parents. A drunken rambling man at the party approached Oedipus and told him that his fate was that he would kill his father and marry his mother. After hearing this Oedipus ran away attempting to avoid his fate in order to save his parents from harm. What Oedipus did not know is that they were not his birth parents. While he was running away he encountered a conflict at a fork in the road with King Laius of Thebes. Oedipus was ordered to move out of the King’s way, but Oedipus, not being accustomed to listening to or taking orders from anyone, killed Laius and everyone in sight. Oedipus never meant for any of this to happen. As soon as he heard .
             news about his fate he fled, “When I heard this, and ever since, I gauged / the way to Corinth by the stars alone, / running to pace where I would never see / the disgrace in the oracle’s words come true. / But I soon came to the exact location / where, as you tell of it, the king was killed” (Sophocles 799-804). Oedipus was not a man of immoral values, he was simply chosen by the gods to have a horrible fate and there was nothing he could do about it. “Who was there born more hated by the gods?” (821) While Oedipus did follow the prophecy of the oracle he tried to avoid it order to keep others from harm, therefore making him a moral man.

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