Divine Law In Antigone

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When it comes to the notions of the law in Sophocles’ Antigone, most of us will readily agree that there were many contrasting beliefs among the characters. However, where this agreement usually ends is on the question of whether the law of the divine or the law of man is superior. The many instances in which the law of the divine and the law of man clash in Sophocles’ Antigone, and the many instances in which the laws of the gods are disobeyed in Homer’s the Odyssey suggest that the law of the divine always prevails above all else.
To begin with, in Sophocles’ Antigone, religion and the state are not necessarily in alignment and are often contradicting each other. When looking at the contrasting beliefs between Antigone and Creon, with regards
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When Antigone goes to Ismene in search of help with burying Polynices, Ismene makes is very clear that she would not go against the king’s decree under any circumstances. She says to Antigone “think how horribly we will die if we go against the king’s decree and strength outside the law. Rather, consider that we were born women, proving we should not fight with men, and that we are ruled by more powerful people and must obey them, even in more painful things.” (Sophocles, 60-65). Ismene begs Antigone to forget all about her plans to bury Polynices because it is downright civil disobedience and wrong to go against the decree of their king and men who hold all power above women. Unfortunately, Antigone goes through with her plan to bury Polynices on her own and is caught in the act by the guards. Ismene learns of this and is left to wonder if the outcome could have been different if she had simply gone with her sister. Her punishment for not honoring the law of the gods is to live with the regret of not burying her own brother and knowing that there was a chance she could’ve saved her sisters

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