Antigone Tragism
Antigone, which was written by Sophocles, is possibly the first written play
that still exists today (www.imagi... 1). There is much controversy between who
the ‘tragic hero’ is in the play. Some people say Antigone, some say Creon,
others even say Heamon. I believe Creon displays all of the characteristics of a
‘tragic hero’. He receives compassion through the audience, yet recognizes
his weaknesses, and his downfalls from his own self-pride, stubbornness, and
controlling demands. He is the true protagonist. Though the audience notices how
villainous Creon is, they still express sympathy towards him. They realize that
he has brought all of his problems on himself and should have been more
open-minded, but think no one should have to go through what he has. They
understand how the warrior king Creon felt when he notices his son is love
struck. The audience also expresses pity towards him because Antigone is a
murderer and understands why he is upset. Creon’s noble quality is his caring
for Antigone and Ismene when their father was persecuted. Creon is a very
authoritative person and demands control of others. When talking to the Chorus,

Creon does not ask them to agree with the decree but demands that they follow
it. Creon expects loyalty from others. It is apparent that Creon is very
dominating and wants to be in control. "The man the city sets up in authority
must be obeyed in small things and in just but also in their
opposites"(717-719). Through this quote the reader realizes that Creon wants
obedience in everything he decides even if he is at fault. "There is nothing
worse than disobedience to authority" (723-724). Further supporting Creon’s
belief that everyone shall remain faithful to him even if he rules unfairly.

This is proved true when Creon says, "Should the city tell me how I am to rule
them?" (790). Creon has forgotten that the ruler is supposed to do what is
best for the city and its citizens. Creon is under the impression that he is
always correct in his judgments and his beliefs. Before the sentry even explains
the event that has occurred, the sentry states that he is only a messenger and
has not committed the crime. Yet Creon still accuses the sentry of receiving
money to do the crime and threatens to punish him. "That will teach you in the
days to come from what you may draw profit [...], ill-gotten gains ruin more
than they save" (342-346). Consequently, the Chorus suggests that the Gods may
have committed the act. Creon stops this "nonsense" conversation immediately
and remarks that Zeus and the Gods would not honor criminals. Creon seems to
believe he knows everything and stubbornly refuses to listen to others. He does
not even believe Haemon his son. Haemon informs his father of the reputation he
has created for himself. Creon thinks, "It seems this boy (Haemon) is on the
woman’s side (Antigone)" (798). Creon refuses to believe what Haemon says
and gets into an argument with him for siding with Antigone. Creon presumes that
he is the one and only perfect ruler for Thebes. He believes that he can create
a better city with his presence: "I would not be silent if I saw ruin [...]. I
would not count any enemy of my country as a friend [...],"(202-206). Creon
further continues by stating "I will make her greater still" (210). In this
quote Creon declares that he will improve the city (she) by his rulings. Creon
describes how his qualities make him a good ruler. Furthermore, Creon views
himself as a good leader because he believes he has the best attributes and no
one can compare to him. He feels he has no time for ordinary people because he
is of higher standards. When Creon says "I will not comfort you with hope that
the sentence will not be accomplished" (982-983), this shows his absolute lack
of compassion when he is talking with Antigone. King Creon noticed that he had a
weakness in which he tries to correct but is too late. His weakness is impulsive
with his decision-making. He never really sits down and thinks about things;
instead he just says what comes to mind. Creon says "you will never marry her
while she lives"(807), right after his first discussion about Antigone. Creon
summarizes his plans for Antigone, which comes to his mind after talking with

Haemon (833-841). These two decisions decided the lives of two young people, but
the impulsive Creon never thought about that. Creon’s stubbornness brings
about his own downfall when he chooses not to believe Teiresias, the