71 pages 2 hours read



Fiction | Play | Adult | BCE

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Scene 4 and 4th Ode

Scene 4 and 4th Ode Summary

As Haimon enters, the Chorus wonders aloud if he has come to rage at his father for sentencing his future wife to death. In fact, Haimon easily accepts his father’s will. Pleased, Kreon makes a speech about the value of obedience, both in sons to their fathers and in subjects to their king. Kreon notes “there is no greater evil than lack of rule” (728), which destroys families and cities and sows sedition in the ranks of armies. Haimon agrees but makes a counterargument to Kreon’s sentencing. Haimon has heard among the people of Thebes a general dissatisfaction with this sentence, since it is widely understood that Antigone did nothing but honor her fallen brother. He urges Kreon to change his mind, reminding him there is no shame in such an action and that he only wishes to keep Kreon safe.

Though the Chorus acknowledges Haimon speaks well, his statement angers Kreon. The two argue, Kreon unwilling to yield either that Haimon is on his side or that he should have to change his decision when he is the ruler of the city. Kreon calls Haimon cowardly and unmanly. Haimon in turn calls Kreon arrogant and childish.

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By Sophocles