Creon is frequently mentioned together the disastrous hero in Antigone, the third of the Theban plays. Is it possible, though, that an Antigone tragic hero essay can take an additional tack? Is it feasible there is an ext than one tragic hero that Antigone?


A tragic hero is most generally a character who, in spite of their an excellent intentions, is doomed to fail, experiencing or defeat. Ordinarily, the hero’s own hubris or other character cons is the reason of their downfall. The most classic tragic hero of all, the course, is Oedipus himself. Doomed native even prior to his birth by a prophecy, Oedipus does every he deserve to to prevent his fate. His own pride and also lack of knowledge work versus him, and in the end, the fulfills the disastrous prophecy.

His storyline ends, and that that his kids picks increase in Antigone. Catastrophic hero story ordinarily save a character who falls to their very own hubris.

How is Antigone a disastrous hero?

Her heroism’s tragedy is a bit much more subtle than that of Creon’s due to the fact that her “fatal flaw” is a confident trait fairly than a an unfavorable one. She flaw is no pride no one hubris, but rather a fierce dedication and love of she family.

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How Is Antigone a Hero?

The an initial criteria because that being a “tragic hero” is, that course, for a personality to it is in a hero. A hero is known for unexplained “courage, superior achievements, or noble qualities.” Antigone fulfills all 3 criteria. She reflects a an excellent deal of courage both in Oedipus in ~ Colonus, once she steadfastly accompanies her father, and also in Antigone. Her courage becomes clear from the play’s opening lines, when she vow to her sister Ismene that she will bury their brother, with or there is no Creon’s approval. Her commitment to her family is more powerful than her are afraid of the punishment promised through the king. 

Her outstanding achievement includes going, in the night, and also defying the order of her uncle, Creon, to ask her brother Polyneices. To perform this, she have to slip previous the guards and also do challenging and heavy work really quickly and likely in the dark, together secretively as possible.

Her noble character is to express in her unwavering commitment to her family. She character is subtly emphasized in ~ the beginning of the play as soon as she meets Ismene to notify her of her plans. Ismene, fearing Creon’s wrath, refuses to sign up with her sisters or assist her. Antigone announces the she will certainly go with or without Ismene’s help. Ismene begs her no to lug out together a foolish and also reckless act, yet Antigone is determined and leaves the palace while her sister returns to her very own rooms, also afraid of the consequences to stand approximately Creon’s stubbornness.

The Tragedy the Antigone

The “tragic” part is a bit more complicated. Ordinarily, a catastrophic hero is doomed by part flaw in their own character. Oedipus to be doomed by his lack of knowledge- not discovering he was adopted. He was the victim of two an adverse traits: ignorance and hubris. His attempts come circumvent the prophecy and also the will certainly of the gods room borne of his belief that he deserve to outrun the prediction. Oedipus, ~ above hearing the prophecy that he will murder his father and also marry his mother, flees. And by fleeing native his house in Corinth to try to escape the prophecy, that unknowingly puts self in the place of fulfilling it. 

Antigone does not suffer hubris, no one is she ignorant of she situation. She understands she uncle’s decree and also the danger of defying it, yet she choose to hazard Creon’s rage in donate of her commitment to she family. Antigone establish Creon’s stubbornness and insists top top going versus his unjust decree to ask her dead brother, a noble gesture. When it can be suggested that Antigone’s pride is what drives her, it is complicated to refuse the courage of her sacrifice.

Why is Antigone the tragic Hero?

The play Antigone is unusual due to the fact that it contains two tragic heros. The an ext obvious one is Creon, whose stubborn pride costs him almost everything. Having already lost his 2 nephews to war, he loser his niece and his very own son. The catastrophic losses that Antigone and Creon’s son can have to be avoided. But why is Antigone a tragic hero? In big part, the reason of her martyrdom is Creon’s pride. 


The uncle and his niece room both strong-willed characters. Antigone shows unusual courage because that a female in Greek mythology. While many women are portrayed as wives, daughters, or mothers, Antigone has actually lost a father, and also her husband theatre a relatively minor part in the conflict. Her commitment to her brother and her insistence on offering him suitable burial rights comparison sharply with other characters’ behaviors.

Her very own mother, Jocasta, once tried to have actually her son, Oedipus, murdered as an infant to avoid the tragic prophecy. Since of Jocasta’s lack of will and strength to lug out the deed herself, Oedipus lived. The is fate why Antigone and her siblings the Jocasta failed. They would certainly not have actually existed if Oedipus had died as one infant. The siblings’ an extremely existence to be cursed by the connection Oedipus gotten in with his own biological mother, who also became his children’s mother.

Ismene’s character is an ext typical that a woman in Greek mythology. Indecisive and also aware of she “place” in the royal residence hierarchy, Ismene refuses to go versus authority. She begs Antigone to think of her, learning she will be left alone if Antigone’s deed is discovered. She is terrified because that Antigone, yet not solid enough to join her in her defiance. It is not until after the deed is brought out the Ismene tries to join Antigone in her punishment, so that she won’t need to live without her sister. 

Ismene is weak and indecisive, but her sister has a stamin of character. Antigone’s loyalty and steadfastness offered her the strength to do what she felt was right. She stood against Creon’s decree to go to the battlefield and also give Polyneices a suitable burial. She has currently lost she father and both brothers, and she refuses to watch her brother’s human body desecrated.

Women in Greek mythology faced an extremely different obstacles from their masculine counterparts. Oedipus’ fight with authority was much more open. He combated Laius, and also unknowingly eliminated his own father. Later he faced the Sphinx terrorizing the area, and defeated that as well. 

Antigone plot in defiance the authority, standing up versus her uncle’s unjust orders. She fight to be much more passive than Oedipus’ had been, but it to be equally difficult. Defying the king meant particular death. Antigone entered her battle completely aware the the aftermath of she actions. She deemed her very own life a reasonable price to pay for she dead brother’s dignity and also her loyalty to her sibling’s memory.

Antigone payment the Price

When Creon learn of her disobedience, he confronts her, but she refuses to back down, recall him that the really law that nature and also the gods room on she side. Creon, furious at gift defied by a woman, insists that he would rather have her executed than spare her together his son’s future wife. Haemon, Creon’s son, is predictably uncomfortable at his father’s stubborn refuse to pardon his cousin/wife. Even with Ismene pleading for her sister’s life, Creon refuses to preventive her.

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Finally, the is encouraged to seal her into a tomb fairly than have actually her directly executed. He declares that due to the fact that she wished her brothers buried, she will have her wish, yet she will join him, sealed because that eternity in a tomb. 

Once more, Ismene’s absence of stamin is offered as a subtle contrast to emphasize Antigone’s courage. Ismene begs to be allowed to join her sister in death, but Antigone refuses, saying her life “is enough.” Ismene, distraught, leaves the room and is not heard from again in the play. She to be unable to join her sisters in committing the crime that defying Creon. Antigone will certainly not allow her either the fear or the respect of joining her in fatality for a crime she did not commit. 

It is not till the remote prophet, Tiresias, comes and informs Creon that he has brought the wrath of the god upon Thebes through his stubborn refuse to fulfill the natural law and also bury Polyneices that he relents. He goes to the tomb with Haemon to relax Antigone, but they find that she has actually hung it s her in despair upon arrival upon come upon arrival.

Antigone’s last act the defiance to be to sign up with her father and brothers in death. At this moment, she i do not care a truly tragic hero. Pride and fear drove her to cave herself just before she would have actually been rescued and also released from her fate. Haemon, furious and grieving, ferris wheel his sword to kill his very own father in revenge because that his bride. That misses and stabs himself. The dies through Antigone, and Creon is left with only the weaker the the sisters.