Loyalty In Antigone

Superior Essays
The Power of Loyalty In “Antigone”
The tragic play Antigone was written by Sophocles that centers on a young brave woman named Antigone. The opening scene of the play begins with two sisters, Antigone, and Ismene, arguing over their brothers Polynices and Eteocles. The brothers both killed each other in battle, and only one of them is getting the proper burial that they both deserve. The brothers had been fighting over their shared profession of being King of Thebes. Their Uncle Creon obtained the role of King and deemed who was to receive a proper burial. Polynices was deemed a traitor to Thebes and was deemed to rot but Eteocles was deemed a proper burial to be honored. Antigone wanted to give Polynices a burial and in the opening scene she
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Her sister, Ismene, tries to talk her out of going against the human law, or the laws Creon developed. Creon believes that Polynices does not deserve a proper burial which makes Ismene believes that also. These beliefs are opposite of Antigone’s beliefs, who is the anti-heroine because she wants to give Polynices the burial he deserves. It is very evident in the play that Antigone wants to appease the Gods and not the king who controls the kingdom she lives in. She contrasts with Creon’s human laws, and with his motives. Antigone states, “I have longer / to please the dead than please the living here: / in the kingdom down below I’ll lie forever” (Sophocles 1244). Antigone has already accepted her fate of death because she knows that is what it will take for Polynices to get his burial. Antigone wants to live her life by divine law and to live for the Gods. She is loyalty to her family because she wants to let her brother lay to rest peacefully, but she also wants to be loyal to the Gods. Antigone stated, “these laws – I was not about to break them, / not out of fear of some man’s wounded pride, / and face the retribution of the gods” (Sophocles 1255). In this scene, Antigone is showing her defiance to Creon, right in front of him. She speaks of knowing that she will die, but she refuses to die by breaking the rules of the divine powers- the …show more content…
She felt like she is the last one in her family that could stop her family’s cure. Since Ismene was the last of her dominance family when Antigone committed suicide she could have possibly thought that she was finally ending the curse. Throughout the play, she always spoke of her death as if she knew it was very close, and that it would happen. Antigone states, “I, / the last of them all, the most reviled by far / go down before my destined time’s run out” (Sophocles 1267). She knew that she had to die for her brother to get his burial, but she also knew that if she died that would leave Ismene to have a curse-free life. It could be said that Antigone was the last cursed of the family, “the last of them all”. Since Ismene was the only women in the family that followed the correct rules and abide by restrictions the women of Ancient Greece had. Antigone wanted to save Ismene from the curse. In many cases during the play, Antigone states how she does not want Ismene to share the blame of the burial. She states to Ismene, “never share my dying, / don’t lay claim to what you never touched. / My death will be enough” (Sophocles 1258). Ismene is asking Antigone to let her lay to rest/ death beside Antigone, but Antigone refuses to let her. Antigone says, “Don’t lay claim to what you never touched”, she meant that because Ismene did not help her with the burial, Ismene does not have to die. Ismene followed the laws of the

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