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Oedipus Myth


Oedipus tale tells the story of how sometimes you cannot avoid fate no matter how far away you try to run from it.  Oedipus was the son of Laius and Jocasta who were the Queen and King of Thebes.  Laius received a message from a prophet that Oedipus would grow up to kill his father, King Laius, and marry his mother, Queen Jocasta.  So, King Laius took the infant child Oedipus, tied his feet together, and left Oedipus hanging from the cliff of a mountain.  But, Oedipus was rescued by Queen Merope and King Polybus from Corinth. They raised him as their own son and Oedipus believed that he was their son.  The same prophet that told his birth father (King Laius) that Oedipus would grow up, kill him, and marry his birth mother (Queen Jocasta) told Oedipus the same tale.  Oedipus believed the prophet, who was actually an evil sphinx, and ran away from Corinth, so that he would not kill his adopted father, King Polybus, and marry his adopted mother, Queen Merope.


Oedipus did run away and came across his biological father, King Laius, whom he accidentally killed.  Oedipus did not know who King Laius was and continued on his way until he came to Thebes.  This is where Oedipus met and fall in love with his real mother, Queen Jocasta.  He married his real mother and had several children with Queen Jocasta.  Oedipus’ mother (Queen Jocasta) explained to him how King Laius was traveling and a stranger killed him.  Oedipus told his wife/mother that he was the one who killed her first husband.  Queen Jocasta realized that Oedipus was her son based on the story and the marks on his feet from being bonded by rope. After realizing that she had married her son and had children by him, Queen Jocasta killed herself.  After Oedipus realized what he had done, in killing his biological father and marrying his biological mother, he was very distraught and was ostracized by the citizens of Thebes.


Oedipus along with his two daughters left Thebes and found refuge in Athens.  Oedipus died in Athens and his body was buried there.  Many people in Athens believed that Oedipus burial site bought them good luck and refused to return his body to Thebes.  Oedipus tragic Greek story teaches us that we cannot run away from fate or destiny.  Also, the Greek mythology teaches us that no matter how hard you try, you can never outrun your true destiny.

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