Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Oedipus” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Oedipus (The Theban Plays #1)

3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  121,951 Ratings  ·  1,819 Reviews
The anguished tale of Oedipus, who having solved the riddle of the Sphinx, and become King of Thebes, gradually realizes the crimes he unwittingly committed, remains a drama of unremitting power 2,500 years after it was written.
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published August 1st 1999 by Naxos Audiobooks (first published -430)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Oedipus, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Oedipus

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Renato Magalhães Rocha
"Look and learn all citizens of Thebes. This is Oedipus.
He, who read the famous riddle, and we hailed chief of men,
All envied his power, glory, and good fortune.
Now upon his head the sea of disaster crashes down.
Mortality is man’s burden. Keep your eyes fixed on your last day.
Call no man happy until he reaches it, and finds rest from suffering."

I believe that in one way or another, everyone - at least to some extent - has heard of the story of Oedipus and Jocasta. It's one of those tales that'
What can I say about SophoclesOedipus Rex that has not already been said? Apart from the patricide and the infamous incest, this is an ancient tale of angst and overall calamity. But since I recently revisited it, this legendary tragedy hasn’t left my mind.
"Look and learn all citizens of Thebes. This is Oedipus.
He, who read the famous riddle, and we hailed chief of men,
All envied his power, glory, and good fortune.
Now upon his head the sea of disaster crashes down.”

I felt after reading the
Bookworm Sean
Sometimes life's a real bitch.

Fate is unavoidable in ancient Greek Tragedy. Trying to avoid it will only lead to it, and doing nothing will lead you there too. So if a God tells you that you will die at the hands of your son, and that he will then go on to steal your wife, you’d best do nothing because it’s going to happen anyway. Any preventative action you take will only lead to the same ending. So, you’re pretty much screwed. You might as well lie down and accept it. The God's are mean.

Nov 21, 2015 Kalliope rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition


I have not read Sophocles’ text recently, but listened to
this exceptional audio edition. Powerfully acted out, with an eerie chorus and dramatic music, it has been a superb experience.

I have come back to this play now in a roundabout way. As part of a Seminar on Aesthetics, The Eye that Thinks, imparted in the Prado Museum, we were prompted by our Professor Félix de Azúa to read Oedipus in a Hegelian framework. We had been discussing the contributions of Hegel to Aesthetics
Jun 27, 2012 Hend rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oedipus of Sophocles is a great work of art written by a great poet,this play symbolizes for the human misery and despair...
the torments of the human soul,the innocence and guilt,Wisdom Out of Suffering and Fate that determines many things no matter how we struggle to change it....
Oedipus hears about his dreadful fate from the Delphic oracle and flees from Corinth. But instead of fleeing from his fate he runs into it...

Oedipus a passionate heart,who ask questions and take risks,has all the quali
Jul 06, 2011 Cheryl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'd say "spoiler alert" but it seems ridiculous . . .

I've taught this play for years, and I think this year I finally decided what makes this play great. My students never feel sympathy for Macbeth, but they do for Oedipus, and that always used to bother me. They whine in their teenage attitudinal voices, "But he didn't know that was his father." I always respond, "So it's ok to KILL PEOPLE if they're not your father?!"

In identifying with Oedipus, they forget the nature of the atrocities he co
Feb 29, 2016 Lyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm being irreverent, but whenever I think of this work I cannot help recalling Mel Brooks in History of the World Part 1.

Apart from the legendary, and infamous, incest, this is an ancient tale of psychological terror and angst. Human nature does not change and the themes Sophocles explored are still relevant today, this is truly a timeless work.

نمايشنامه ى مشهور اديپ شهريار، يكى از بزرگترين تراژدى هاى يونان باستان.
از لحاظ داستان، واقعاً اعجاب انگيزه. داستان ابتدا با معمايى شروع ميشه كه نجات شهر "تِبس" از نابودى به حل اون بسته است، ولى هيچ كس جوابش رو نميدونه. بعد كم كم كه معما حل ميشه، پاسخ وحشتناك و تراژيكش آشكار ميشه و نجات شهر از نابودى، به بهاى بسيار سنگينى حاصل ميشه. اين روش طرح معما و حل مرحله به مرحله ش، بسيار شبيه به داستان هاى جنايى امروزيه، و از خيلى از اين داستان ها به مراتب بهتره.
اما اثر، طبعاً به مقتضاى زمان نگارشش، مشكلات
David Sarkies
Feb 17, 2016 David Sarkies rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anybody
Recommended to David by: David Hester
Shelves: tragedy
The Ultimate of Greek Tragedies
8 April 2012

This play is so messed up that a part of me says that it has to be based on true events. It is sort of like one of the arguments that people use regarding the authenticity of the Bible: every character (with the exception of Jesus Christ) is so flawed that one cannot consider that the stories have been made up. In particular we see the heroes of the Israelite nation, that being Abraham, Moses, and David, warts and all. However when us consider the Grec
Jul 25, 2016 Jenny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"[...] Θα το νιώσεις
με τον καιρό καλά,τι ο χρόνος μόνο
τον τίμιο άντρα φανερώνει· όμως
το φαύλο σε μια μέρα τον γνωρίζεις."

This is my first reading of the ancient Greek play. Like so many stories that are part of our cultural consciousness, I thought I was very familiar with the plot but was so wrong. I asked my husband what he knew of Oedipus Rex and he said the same thing I was thinking: man murders his father and marries his mother=oedipus complex ala Dr Sigmund Freud.

That, of course, is what happens but the true tragedy is that it was not intended. In the opening scenes of the play, Thebes has been plagued by f
Aug 16, 2012 Bruce rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We all know the story that this play tells; it has been part of the cultural heritage that most of us have known for as long as we can remember, and many of us have read it any number of times. Each reading brings new insights, new questions, and rather than tell the story once again, I prefer to dwell on the thoughts and questions that this reading brought to my mind.

Wherein lies the Evil in this play? In the prophecy and, apparently, the determinism of the gods that Oedipus will kill his fathe
Sep 17, 2011 Kaion rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: play, essential
What's interesting about fate, and what's different from our world and Oedipus's, is that "fate" doesn't really exist in our world. No real oracles go around telling you you're going to sleep with your mother. Instead, it's a philosophical device. On one side you've got "free will" (traditional very Western, very American even with the idea of the individual going forward), and on the other side you've got your fatalists (see my mom and her Vietnamese cosmology [is that the word? Whatever, I’m g ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
قسمتی از نمایشنامه
.همسرایان: میخواهیم حقیقت هیاهویی را که تا به امروز بر سر زبانهاست بدانیم
..ادیپوس: وای بر من
.همسرایان: آرام باش تمنا میکنم
..ادیپوس: بسیار ناهنجار است. باری میگویم. من نارواترین بیداد را بر خود هموار کردم. من ستمی ناسزاوار بر خود هموار کردم. خدا میداند که اختیاری در کار نبود
.همسرایان: در چه کاری؟
..ادیپوس: در ازدواجی ننگین به خاطر شرم، نادانسته به زناشویی رسوایی دست زدم
.همسرایان: میگویند مادرت در این پیوند ننگین همسر تو بود
..ادیپوس: بیاد آوردن آن در حکم مرگ من است. تازه این دو نی

Il est un être à deux pieds, trois pieds, quatre pieds sur la terre, mais une seule voix: il est seul à changer de nature parmi les êtres qui vont sur la terre, dans l'air, dans les vagues: lorsque prenant appui sur le plus de pieds il chemine, c'est alors que la rapidité de son corps est la moindre.
(Anthologie Palatine, XIV, 64)

Juste une petite relecture rapide d'Œdipe (prononcé édipe) Roi de Sophocle avant d'en traduire plusieurs passage, histoire de bien avoir l'histoire en tête.

Œdipe (lit
David Gallagher
Mar 20, 2010 David Gallagher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a student in a Greek high school I was more or less forced to read this, translate it from the ancient Greek text for my exams to "prove" I deserved to go to the next educational level (where we did Homer), do assignments on it, listen to my professors as they spoke of its "meaning" and ask myself why Sophocles wrote it to begin with. And I HATED the damn thing. I hated Oedipus just as much as I hated Sophocles.

However, when I left high school, I realized that people - not only in Greece, bu
Marty :}
Feb 04, 2016 Marty :} rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
I actually like this one better than Antigone, the subject is very disturbing, but I liked the writing a lot.
Caroline Gurgel
Jul 08, 2016 Caroline Gurgel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Li Édipo Rei pela primeira vez ainda criança, em uma daquelas edições adaptadas, em prosa, que as escolas adotam. Não me lembrava dos detalhes, mas como gostara da leitura, sempre tive vontade de ler o texto na íntegra. Então, quando me deparei com essa edição caprichada - e comentada! - de O Melhor do Teatro Grego, que inclui Prometeu acorrentado, Édipo Rei, Medéia e As Nuvens, não pensei duas vezes em comprá-la.

O livro traz uma breve apresentação sobre o teatro grego, um pequeno glossário e, p
Jan 08, 2013 Julia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Greek mythology, plays or messed up tales
Recommended to Julia by: Life
Free will does not exist.

At least, according to Sophocles it doesn't. Take Oedipus Rex as a perfect example, he hears an oracle predicting his future, a future so horrible that he cannot bear the thought of it. So he packs his bags and leaves his father and mother for fear of killing one and sleeping with the other. However, his fate follows him and he ends up doing exactly as predicted.

The real kicker here is that it's almost as if the gods are playing a joke on Oedipus. First they tell his bi
Jul 22, 2015 anarki rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My knowledge of King Oedipus was merely based on what I’ve read from Freud’s theory. As defined, Oedipus Complex is an unconscious sexual desire of a child for his mother and hate toward his father as the child considers him a rival for his mother’s affection. I thought that the story of Oedipus the King was just about a man killing his own father to sleep with his mother. It was only when I read the play that I learned that it wasn’t Oedipus’s intention to murder his father, let alone copulate ...more
Kuningas Oidipus on lyhyt ja nopealukuinen, minulle kahdelta istumalta luettu näytelmäklassikko. Se sisältää sivujansa enemmän traagisuutta ja puhuu painoansa painavammista asioista.
Orhan Pamuk'un Kırmızı Saçlı Kadın'ında fazlasıyla spoiler okumuştum. Yine de merakla ve keyifle okudum.

".. son gününü görmeden hiç kimseye mutluluğa ermiş demeyin! "
Karl H.
Mar 01, 2011 Karl H. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First, let me clear something up. Oedipus is one of the classics of Western Literature as a tragedy, not as a murder mystery, a genre that wouldn't yet be invented for more than a thousand years. The questions Oedipus asks us are not questions of motive and guilt. Oedipus is not a detective. We know who did it, the audience would've known who did it, almost everyone in the play who Oedipus questions knows what's up. It's not really a mystery to anyone besides Oedipus and the chorus. There's only ...more
Nov 16, 2015 Τζο rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Μπορει κανεις,αραγε,να ξεφυγει απο το πεπρωμενο του?Ο Σοφοκλης πιστευει πως οχι,και τουτο μας διδασκει με τον "Οιδιπους Τυραννος".Μια απο τις καλυτερες τραγωδιες,συμφωνα με τους ειδημονες,και μερος του Θηβαικου δραματικου κυκλου.

Κεντρικος μας ηρωας ο Οιδιπους,οπως εχω γραψει σε αυτο το ποστ (λινκ),ειναι ο βασιλιας της Θηβας,κερδισε τον θρονο αλλα και την γυναικα του οταν ελυσε τον γριφο της Σφιγγας και εσωσε την πολη.Η ιστορια μας ξεκιναει οταν την πολη την πνιγει παλι η δυστυχια και η κακοτυχια
Alan Smith
Apr 01, 2013 Alan Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To the ancient Greeks, the word "Tragedy" didn't just mean something with a sad ending. To them, the word referred to a play with a certain defined structure and theme - about a happy person who, because of a single tragic flaw, becomes the victim of the gods. The format was invented for a specific purpose called "catharsis" - the idea was that you went to the theater, watched the play, and gained an emotional release that made your own petty issues fade into insignificance.

"Oedipus Rex" is perh
Beautiful! incredibly expressive.
Good tragic (exaggeratedly so, but all the better for it!) art works have a sort of effect that I wish i could describe with a good metaphor but I cant seem to come up with one, so I'l try to simply describe them.
I think, living in a pit of mystery as we are, there is nothing more mysterious than human emotions, and sometimes someone so very talented, hardworking, well educated or even very tortured (or any combination of the previous) sits down to make somethin
Mar 16, 2013 Bayan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My professor in the university once said,"I've been teaching this play in the drama course for more than 3 years, and every time I think I'm done with it, it teaches me something new. Perhaps when it stops amazing me, I will stop teaching it."
I think this is what great literature is about- never grows old nor stops teaching. The play doesn't only make us question the role of god(s),fate, and destiny and whether it's fair to be controlled by external powers. It also makes us question who we are
Li Seagull
Of course, it may be the Greco-Roman mythology geek in me speaking, or perhaps the Latin student, but...I actually really liked this play! It came as a pleasant surprise, too; I thought it was going to be another play where I would have to grind my teeth and look past paragraphs upon paragraphs of angsty repartee while hating the main character(s).

Sophocles is brilliant. Loved this one, and I look forward to reading the other two. I'd already read plenty of versions (watered-down) of the Oedipus
Viji Sarath (Bookish endeavors)
Never have I read of such an accursed life as of Oedipus.. From where to where he takes his life by his own wit and courage.!! A shepherd's child who becomes a king.. Thy story might have made classics,Oedipus.. And you might have married a beautiful princess and begat a courageous line of successors.. But...... Accursed that you are right from birth.. Thy birth marked thy fall.. Impossible it is,to escape the clutches of fate.. No matter how much we mortals try.. There lies your story,in words ...more
Karim Abdel-Khalek‎
*الجزء الأول من ثلاثية أوديب*

أوديب الملك الذي تزوج زوجة الملك السابق الذي قتله ، يحتال على الناس و يحقق في مقتل ذلك الملك ، المسرحية مشهورة جداً و جميلة جداً ، يقول له العراف أنه سيقتل أباه و سيتزوج أمه و بالفعل تتحقق النبوءة

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres Oedipus and the
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Oedipus Rex Review 1 9 May 23, 2016 08:45AM  
Crash Course Lite...: Oedipus Rex 1 12 Feb 22, 2014 08:35PM  
Crash Course Literature 2 1 26 Feb 13, 2014 02:29PM  
Orange B 2014: Oedipus 29 44 Sep 13, 2013 08:57AM  
  • Alcestis
  • Clouds
  • Eumenides (Ορέστεια, #3)
  • Tartuffe
Sophocles (Greek: Σοφοκλής; German editions: Sophokles, Russian: Софокл) was an ancient Greek tragedy playwright. Not many things are known about his life other than that he was wealthy, well educated and wrote about one hundred and twenty three plays (of which few are extant). One of his best known plays is 'Oedipus the King' (Oedipus Rex).
More about Sophocles...

Other Books in the Series

The Theban Plays (3 books)
  • Oedipus at Colonus (The Theban Plays, #2)
  • Antigone (The Theban Plays, #3)

Share This Book

“To throw away an honest friend is, as it were, to throw your life away” 247 likes
“I have no desire to suffer twice, in reality and then in retrospect.” 159 likes
More quotes…