Antigone Loyalty Quotes

613 Words3 Pages
Do Not Ignore the Laws of the Gods

Loyalty to the state should not undermine a person’s loyalty to their gods. When the king challenges or ignores the authority of the gods, he is headed for failure. Sophocles trumpets this message throughout his tragic play, Antigone. After Polyneices rebelled against Thebes and killed his brother Eteocles in battle, King Creon decreed that a traitor to the state cannot be buried. Worse, the body of a traitor is left to rot above ground as food for scavengers. Creon’s law conflicts with Antigone’s loyalty to the gods. She believes the laws of the gods respect the dead and require a proper burial. She does not hesitate to ignore the law of the state and fulfill the laws of the gods. When she turns to her sister, Ismene, to bury their brother, Polyneices, Ismene’s fear consumes her. “Think how much more terrible our own
…show more content…
He finally discovers that his refusal to see past his own opinion is his downfall. He punished Antigone and mocked those who questioned his law, including his trusted prophet, Teiresias. The prophet clearly warned him, “You shall pay back corpse for corpse, flesh of your own flesh.” (scene 5 line 77-80). He would pay for his crime against the laws of the gods. “The one in the grave before her death, the other, dead, denied the grave. This is your crime.” (scene 5 lines 80-83). Tragically, Creon did not change his mind until it was too late. Finally, he realized, “the laws of the gods are mighty, and a man must serve them to the last day of his life!” He intended to free Antigone, but in the vault, Antigone committed suicide and Haimon followed. When Creon’s wife heard her son was dead, she killed herself as well. The prophecy became a reality. Sophocles demonstrates that there are consequences for a person who believes they are supreme above all, including the gods. No man, not even a king, can escape the judgment of the gods he
Open Document