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Oedipus the King


This Greek tragedy, also known as Oedipus Rex, was first performed ca. 429 BC. The play was the second of Sophocles' three Theban plays to be produced, but comes first in the internal chronology of the plays, followed by Oedipus at Colonus and then Antigone. Over the centuries it has come to be regarded by many as the Greek tragedy par excellence.


Much of the myth of Oedipus takes place before the opening scene of the play. The main character of the tragedy is Oedipus, son of King Laius of Thebes and Queen Jocasta. After Laius learned from an oracle that "he was doomed/To perish by the hand of his own son," Jocasta binds his infant son's feet together tightly with rope and delivered him to a servant with orders to kill the child. Instead, the baby was found and rescued by a shepherd who named him Oedipus (which actually means "swollen foot").

(From Wikipedia, description text under GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL))

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