A.2. Apollo and his purpose in Sophocles' Oedipus Tyrannus

Stuart Lawrence


Apollo actively intervenes in the fulfilment of Oedipus’ destiny through oracles and immanently in the onstage action. Rather than to punish him for any offence, the god’s purpose appears to be to impress upon Oedipus his existential insignificance. In the context of an ordered but absurd universe, Sophocles emphasises the paradox of the moral greatness of a man whose ‘official’ existential value is less than zero.


Greek tragedy; drama; Oedipus; Oidipus; Sophocles; Sophokles

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