Antigone is the last play in a famous Greek trilogy, written by Sophocles. The Oedipus trilogy told the story of Oedipus, a tragic Greek hero, who defeated the sphinx and saved Thebes, but unknowingly killed his father and married his mother. While it was not written last, the Antigone play is the final chapter chronologically in a story filled with human suffering at the hands of fate.
Have students identify themes from Antigone by Sophocles!
I'm the eldest. I should be the sole King.
Eteocles shall be buried.
Polynices, my brother may your soul be at rest now. You are free...
Before King Oedipus leaves, he states that his sons should take turns ruling. When one will not give up the throne, the two fight to their death, leaving Creon next in line for the throne.
It's my turn to be king!
Creon decides that he shall favor Eteocles, the eldest son. By doing so, he gives him a proper burial while leaving Polynices unburied. According to Greek lore, this means his soul will not go to the underworld.
You killed my bride!
Sister to the fallen Kings, Antigone decides to disobey Creon's decree and bury her brother. She cites the law of the gods as being higher than man's law.
In utter tragedy, Antigone hangs herself. This is seen as a symbol of her martyrdom, rather than an act of despair.
Haemon threatens to kill his father Creon; however, he is unable to do so and takes his own life instead.
Haemon, son, I was on my way to free her... you must believe me.
When Queen Eurydice finds out her son has taken his life, she takes her own.