Essay on Analysis Of Euripides ' Medea '

2072 Words Nov 11th, 2016 9 Pages
One of the most blatant symbols in Euripides’ Medea is the poisoned diadem which Medea’s children deliver to Creon’s daughter in an act of rancorous spite. The malevolence of Medea’s words nearly seeps from the pages when she declares to the chorus exactly how she plans to enact her vengeance.
MEDEA. I will send the children with gifts […] and if she takes them and wears them upon her skin she and all who touch the girl will die in agony. Such poison I will lay upon the gifts. (page 26)
Notice that Medea takes care to specify that the princess will not only die, but die in agony, though she has not directly wronged Medea in any way (seeing as it’s doubtful she had any say in her marriage to Jason). The key to understanding this symbol is that the crown is a metonym for rulership, and in essence, represents the ways that Creon and Jason have defamed the royal line with unjust rule. For starters, Creon goaded Jason into abandoning his wife to marry the princess of Corinth and effectively destroyed a flourishing relationship. Though he alone is not to blame, as Jason was the one who ultimately chose to abandon his marriage vows and family in pursuit of potential ruling power. Because these leaders of Corinth are so corrupted, a poisoned diadem is apt to convey their nefarious intentions. Not only this, but greed and callous self-interest are at the root of each man’s debauchery, and each one faces harsh reparations because of it: Creon with his life and Jason with his grief for…

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