Kingship In Antigone And Medea English Literature Essay

The Kings that we come across in Sophocles ‘ ‘Antigone ‘ and Euripides ‘Medea ‘ show qualities which are rather far from kingly ideals and in fact exhibit ideas and action against the spirit of ideal kingship. Creon and Aegeus in ‘Medea ‘ behave without discretion and opinion and prosecuting selfish personal ends endanger non merely themselves but besides their full province. Creon in ‘Antigone ‘ suffers from an self-importance which makes him jeopardize the moral clime of his province and incur the wrath of the Supreme beings on his household. In contrast the supporters come across as more heroic, demoing bravery, inventiveness, resoluteness and finding beyond those expected of their gender.

The two Creons from Antigone and Medea have displayed kingship manners which are really different from each other. In Antigone, Creon in his first soliloquy appears to adhere stanchly to the province Torahs ( Torahs made by the male monarch or his predecessors ) and does what he feels is best without looking at whether the Gods accept his beliefs or non ; “ the power of the throne is ageless ” .[ 1 ]He says “ a adult male who thinks more extremely of a friend than his state, good, he means nil to me ”[ 2 ]which goes to demo if given a pick between friends and state like a baronial male monarch he says state. He is autocratic- ” I have the throne, all royal power ” .[ 3 ]In his interchange with the Guard he reveals himself to be impatient and immature as even the guard got him irritated- “ but I find your voice so irritating-do n’t you recognize that? ”[ 4 ]He talk ‘s extremely about justness [ quotation mark ] but his actions reveal him to be unfair. He threatens the guard, “ unless you bring him here before my eyes, so decease for you will ne’er be plenty. No, non before you ‘re hung up still alive ” .[ 5 ]He accuses and wants to penalize Ismene without a test – “ non get away my harshest penalty – her sister, excessively ” .[ 6 ]He takes determinations which backfire such as seting Antigone to decease. Creon feels that to asseverate power and authorization he must administrate penalty or he ‘ll be seen as weak- “ good, in this instance, if she gets her manner and goes unpunished, so she ‘s the adult male here, non me ” .[ 7 ]

Creon, in Medea, does non even claim to keep the State as of import. He is n’t an ideal swayer as he values his kids ‘s involvements over those of the province, “ I love my state too-next after my kids ” .[ 8 ]In his interchange with Medea he starts off with sharply assailing Medea who has merely before received the understanding from the Nurse and the Chorus for her hapless status after Jason ‘s betrayal- “ you, with that angry expression, so set against your hubby, Medea, I order you to go forth my districts ” .[ 9 ]He does n’t believe of the rights of Medea ‘s kids and merely wants his girl to be safe and exiles Medea and her kids uncovering him to be barbarous and heartless. Creon accepts that he is scared of Medea and her superhuman powers- “ I am afraid of you-why should I feign it? ”[ 10 ]acknowledging to cowardice non suited in a male monarch. Creon banishes Medea and says “ it is my decree, and I will see it done. I will non return place until you are cast from the boundaries of my land ” .[ 11 ]He goes on to state “ you will ne’er carry me ” .[ 12 ]And so in an act of inexplicable folly he gets taken in by Medea ‘s misrepresentations even after being cognizant of her inventiveness. He displays irresponsible leading and stepping down of all his responsibilities as a King.

The guard in Antigone exposes Creon ‘s defects through his remarks on Creon. The guard anticipated Creon ‘s reaction to the intelligence of the entombment of Polyneices organic structure and manipulates Creon and delays his penalty successfully. It is seen how the minor graded character corrects the major character — “ how unusual and sad when the 1 who sorts this out gets it all incorrect ” .[ 13 ]He irritates Creon and dauntlessly asks him what hurts more – ” where does it ache? Is it in your ears or in your head. ”[ 14 ]His long duologue with his King irritates and tires the King so much that Creon wants Antigone to depict her function in the burial “ briefly-not in some drawn-out address ” .[ 15 ]However it is Teiresias, a unsighted prophesier whose prognostications ne’er turn out to be incorrect who reveals the complete falsity of Creons ‘ position- ” I ‘ll state you and you obey the prophesier ” .[ 16 ]He besides represents the authorization of faith which rivals Creon ‘s authority- ” I know-thanks to me you save the metropolis and now are in control ”[ 17 ]. He brings out loopholes in Creon ‘s character even as his entry is the turning point of the drama. He talks to him in a really confident and superior mode and as a consequence Creon ‘s self-importance is affected. Creon ‘s discourtesy to him uncover his amour propre and self-importance but which is corrected by his dire prognostication and the cautiousness of the Chorus- ” Yes, my Godhead, every bit fast as possible. Swift footed hurts sent from the Gods drudge down those who act imprudently. ”[ 18 ]

Aegeus ‘ debut is important chiefly in footings of secret plan when seeing his despair for kids she sees in the decease of her ain kids an alone chance for retaliation against Jason. She has besides got a safe oasis from Aegeus where she may get away and populate in expatriate. He seems comparably more admirable than King Creon. Aegeus appears to be smarter than Creon from the beginning as he allows her a safe oasis but on a status that she by herself can make his house. Again he stops abruptly of being the complete brave hero ; he does non supply unconditioned aid particularly as he feels she has been wronged – “ does Jason consent? I can non O.K. of this. ”[ 19 ]Again he arrives at this opinion without any deep investigation of the affair hearing merely Medea ‘s side of the narrative. He is in such a haste to secure Medea ‘s aid that he allows her to put the footings of understanding cursing on all the Gods Medea references. It should non be forgotten that in both the dramas, Medea and Antigone, kingship is being slightly linked with selfishness. Both the Creons and even Aegeus in Medea have personal ends to accomplish during their monarchal regulation. A childless Aegeus is an impotent King and like Creon in Medea is out to guarantee a replacement. To that extent they are willing to compromise: Creon will unjustly and heartlessly evict Medea and her kids after stealing her hubby from her for his girl ; Aegeus will compromise the security of his province by acquiring a sorceress with a violent yesteryear into his state and hazard raging his Alliess in Corinth and Creon in Antigone bullies his inferiors, the chorus, the guard, Antigone, Ismene, Haemon and is ready to revoke the same Torahs which he had used to mangle Polyneices organic structure and order Antigone ‘s executing when he wants to salvage his ain boy and household.

Creon who does n’t esteem people “ who thinks more extremely of a friend than his state ”[ 20 ]subsequently demands from Haemon obeisance due to a male parent than as a male monarch hence traveling against his ain belief- ” You ‘re the worst at that place is-you put your opinion up against your male parent ” .[ 21 ]He says – ” do n’t give to those who contravene my orders ”[ 22 ]but he himself rolls back his ain decease punishment that he had announced on Antigone. Their addresss in Medea and Antigone echo with sarcasm. They show that how the two were over confident and underestimated the remainder. In Medea, Creon underestimates that Medea can non make anything in one twenty-four hours and in Antigone he says that adult females themselves can non make anything.

Antigone is impenitent, brave and unafraid and continues to make what she feels is right that is to travel by the Godhead Torahs and ridicules Creon ‘s alleged ‘state laws’- ” Yes. Zeus did non denote those Torahs to me. And Justice life with the Gods below sent no such Torahs for work forces. ”[ 23 ]She is n’t worried about the penalty she is traveling to have from Creon as she has the assurance and religion in her sanctum cause. Medea ‘s cause is the antonym of sanctum but her firm retribution against Jason every bit good as her accomplishments and resourcefulness that help her to overreach Creon by imploring him by his “ articulatio genuss ”[ 24 ]and by his “ freshly wedded miss ”[ 25 ]and that help her manipulate Aegeus – two male monarchs – comes across as impressive.

Both Creons suffer the same terminal – one dies seeking to salvage his fatally poisoned girl and the other is reduced to a “ external respiration cadaver ”[ 26 ]after the deceases of his married woman and boy. They seem to hold no being outside the domain of the ego and the household whereas Antigone ‘s preparedness to give ego ; her bravery, heroism and spirit and her unquestionable rule over the moral land shows her stature. Medea ‘s intelligence, Machiavellian statecraft, diplomatic dialogue and strategising exposes the deficiency of these qualities in the Kings of the dramas. Both dramatists have succeeded in ostracizing the castle from centre phase leting for new heroines to come up.