Oedipus rushes out.The Chorus sings a song about how transient happiness is, whata splendid king Oedipus has been, and howOedipus is now the victim of destiny.The next scene is an extremely graphic account, by an eyewitness.
[pointing to the priest while drawing Oedipus to the palace] I'm ready now, or we might go inside." Oedipus replies, "Speak to us all. I grieve for these, my people more than I fear for my own life." Oedipus could have received the message in private, which would have prevented the others from hearing that Laius' murderer was present in Thebes and must be "banished or paid back blood for blood." As a result, the truth about how and where the murder was committed became public knowledge, and Oedipus' decision to allow Creon to speak in public about his findings from the Oracle was conducted under free will and was a step toward his own destruction. Another aspect, which shows how Oedipus' "free will" contributed to his demise, was his promise to find and avenge Laius' murderer. Despite the fact that Oedipus was unaware of who killed the king or why someone would have wanted him dead, he quickly, openly and freely swore to avenge and banish the killer. He could have sworn to find, capture and question the killer's motives, then kill or banish when satisfied that the murder was unjust.Instead Oedipus' impulsive measures were another step toward his ruin. Oedipus was quite hasty when he told Creon and the others at the palace, "Whoever killed the king may decide to kill me too, with the same violent hand - by avenging Laius I defend myself." Oedipus was anxious to show his people that he wanted to rid the city of the terrible plague, but in this decision played a further role in the end. Oedipus' drive to learn the truth about the death of Laius was the most important variable, which shows that his banishment from the city and loss of power and wealth was all controlled by his free will. After Oedipus promises to rid his city of the murderer through exile he places a curse on the murderer and plays detective in search for a killer. During a discussion with Tiresias, Oedipus says, "You know and won't tell? You're bent on betraying us, destroying Thebes." Oedipus forced Tiresias to reveal that Oedipus was the true murderer.
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