Oedipus Rex | Study Guide

Sophocles

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Oedipus Rex | Stasimon 1 | Summary

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Summary

The Stasimon is the Chorus's response to the episode that precedes it. The Chorus sings of its confusion about Teiresias's prophecy. Although it knows that Apollo and Zeus see everything that humans do, it is now unsure that human beings can serve as prophets because Teiresias has accused the man who is the savior of the people of Thebes. The Chorus says it sides with Oedipus no matter what he did because he saved its city from the Sphinx. Still, the Chorus is afraid that this prophecy might be true.

Analysis

The Chorus says that, for the killer, "that fatal oracle still lives, hovering above his head forever." This suggests that there may be a connection between the "fatal oracle" and the plague that has swept the city. The Chorus does not, however, question the gods or their power. It only questions the power of human beings. While the Chorus is referring to Teiresias as a prophet who transmits the word of the oracle, it foreshadows the inability of human beings, notably Oedipus and Jocasta, to outwit the gods.

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