Konstantinos Ntellas

by Sophocles


Arguably Sophocles’ most popular tragedy, Antigone is set in Thebes, shortly after the civil war that resulted in the mutual killing of the two brothers, Eteocles and Polynices. King Creon orders Eteocles’ honourable burial. At Creon’s behest, Polynices is to remain unburied, being an enemy of Thebes. The two men’s sister, Antigone, refuses to obey the order. After arguing with her sister, Ismene, who originally refuses to help her, Antigone decides to bury Polynices on her own. Subsequently, she is arrested and sentenced to death. Creon stubbornly insists on his decision and does not yield to the appeals of his son, the lovelorn Aemon. He finally relents and changes his mind after the clairvoyant Tiresias makes him see that this decision will seal his doom. Too late, though: Antigone has already committed suicide inside her tomb. Refusing to come to terms with her death, Aemon also takes his life, followed by his mother, Euridice, who hangs herself after learning of her son’s death. At the end of the play, Creon is left behind, a tragic figure, one of the most harrowing characters in the entire canon of ancient drama.

With English surtitles