- The myth of Oedipus was very old/well known to the audience (Sophocles' use of well-known material made the play new).

- He decided to focus not so much on Oedipus' actions which had made his name well-known, but his discovery of the truth - differed in doing this to people like Homer, as he did not use divine interaction but focused on Oedipus' actions which led him to this discovery. 

- Classic example of "tragedy of fate."

- Contains no gods or monsters = human and logical. 

- Destiny/fate/will of the gods do loom behind the human action but those actions at nearly every point are familiar to the audience. 

-- When Sophocles was a boy, Spartan soldiers had stood motionless under a fire of Persian arrows as their prophets tried to obtain a prediction from the gods - only when it was declared favourable did they advance. (Context)

- However, belief in prophecy was under attack particularly in the last half of the fifth century in Athens = new philosophers, a plague that threatened to remove the faith in the gods


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