Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Oedipus Rex (The Theban Plays, #1)” as Want to Read:
Oedipus Rex  (The Theban Plays, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Oedipus Rex

(The Theban Plays #1)

by
3.70  ·  Rating details ·  165,932 ratings  ·  3,169 reviews
"...what man wins more happiness than just its shape and the ruin when that shape collapses?"

Sophocles' Oedipus Rex has never been surpassed for the raw and terrible power with which its hero struggles to answer the eternal question, "Who am I?" The play, a story of a king who acting entirely in ignorance kills his father and marries his mother, unfolds with shattering pow
...more
Paperback, 75 pages
Published June 22nd 2006 by Prestwick House - (Literary Touchstone Classic) (first published -429)
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 Rex, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Daniel The quote may be from a different translation. Translations can differ to a surprising degree. I would look for a similar line in the translation that…moreThe quote may be from a different translation. Translations can differ to a surprising degree. I would look for a similar line in the translation that you have and go from there. (less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-59
Average rating 3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  165,932 ratings  ·  3,169 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of Oedipus Rex (The Theban Plays, #1)
Lizzy
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 th
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Οἰδίπους Τύραννος = Oedipus Tyrannus = Oedipus = Oedipus Rex = Oedipus the King (The Theban Plays #1), Sophocles
Oedipus the King, is an Athenian tragedy by Sophoclesو that was first performed around 429 BC. Oedipus sent his brother-in-law Creon to ask advice of the oracle at Delphi concerning a plague ravaging Thebes. Creon returns to report that the plague is the result of religious pollution, since the murderer of their former King, Laius, had never been caught. Oedipus vows to find the murde
...more
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 tha
...more
Sean Barrs
Nov 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
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.

But,
...more
James
Book Review
4 out of 5 stars to Oedipus Rex, the first of "The Theban Plays," written by Sophocles around 430 BC. If you are unfamiliar with Greek tragedies, the thing you need to know most is that the authors often played with the concept of fate: not just that some things are meant to be or to come back and haunt you, but that there is always more going on than you realize at the time. This is one of the plays you should absolutely read. Although borderline spoiler, it's important t
...more
Kalliope
Mar 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing



THE EYE THAT DIES


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 Aestheti
...more
emma
nothin like a forced reread in order to write a terrible paper

-------

classic oedipus!!! always going and getting himself into life-ruining, city-destroying shenanigans :')
Hend
Jun 06, 2012 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
...more
Zenki the Hermit
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, classics
You'll enjoy this book if you like:

👑 Plays (duh)
👑 Ancient Greece (also duh)
👑 A fast read!
👑 Gods who release plagues on a kingdom to ignite drama
👑 (view spoiler)
👑 Murder mysteries
👑 Knowing something crucial about the plot early on and waiting for characters to find out all about it (A.K.A. Slow characters)
👑 Dysfunctional families
...more
Miltos S.
Jan 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Βρε τον Οιδίποδα τον Τυραγνισμένο... Είχε πολύ ψωμί τελικά...

Πέρα από την πλάκα τώρα, τέτοια κείμενα είναι που σε κάνουν να λες ότι αξίζει να νιώθεις περήφανος, έστω που έχεις την τύχη να ζεις στον ίδιο χώρο που έζησαν και αυτοί οι μεγάλοι δημιουργοί, τόσες χιλιάδες χρόνια πριν.

Ένα έργο που δεν θα ξεπεραστεί όσες χιλιετίες κι αν περάσουν.
Cheryl
Jul 06, 2011 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
...more
David Schaafsma
Aug 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: plays
“I want a girl, just like the girl, that married dear old Dad”—Oedipus

But, why accept a copy when you can get the real thing?!

I read this because 1) recently I had read (out of order) Antigone and thought I might reread the whole trilogy; 2) I plan to see a local production of the play and 3) I had some vague notion that the play, about a king, might throw some literary light on our current American King and kingly conduct. I listened to it, though I had to start over 3-4 times because the reade
...more
Sarah
“Fear? What has a man to do with fear? Chance rules our lives, and the future is all unknown. Best live as we may, from day to day.”
Amaranta
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Chi tra gli umani, chi riceve più felicità di quanta ne basti per sembrare felice? ”.
Mi sono ritrovata a voler rileggere questo dramma, affrontato più volte sui banchi di scuola, per i numerosi richiami che Pamuk ne fa nel suo “ la donna dai capelli rossi”. Volevo capire l’ossessione che il personaggio ha per questo mito e niente è meglio che ritornare sui propri passi.
Edipo è l’archetipo del male, che si perpetua senza coscienza, l’uomo che uccide senza saperlo il padre, colui che lo ha gen
...more
david
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: plays-drama
I really do not like my mother.

I realize that moms (mums for the English) have many hats to wear. There is the tumult she has with the husband who never listens to her, and the children who end up at the principal’s office, and the clothes that need mending, and the purveying and construction of victuals to meet everyone’s different palate. Got it. I cannot even imagine what extra toll and toil the 1960’s will bring on these unappreciated females. But that is still years away. I like to focus o
...more
R. Ar.
Nov 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tek kelime ile mükemmel. Önsöz kitabın yarısını oluşturuyor ve önbilgi olması adına çok güzel detaylara yer verilmiş. Yalnız geçenlerde okuduğum Zweig eserinin önsözünde yaptıkları gibi yine bütün kitabın hikayesi özetleniyor. Zaten okurken anlayacağımız kısımların neden kısaca özetlendiğine bir türlü anlam veremesem de 2500 sene önce tanrıları ön plana çıkaran bir topluma ait bu eserde tanrıların "keyif",insanların da "kader" dedikleri bu alın yazısı ancak bu kadar güzel yerilebilirdi. Bu vesil ...more
Lyn
Dec 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
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.

description
...more
Kahveci
Jan 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: plays
Thebai halkı hastalık, kıtlık, ölü doğan çocuklar gibi büyük felaketlerle boğuşmaktadır. Thebai'nin Kral'ı Oidipus güçlü, dürüst ve adil bir adamdır. Sarayının önüne gelip ondan çare bulmasını bekleyen halka elinden geleni yapacağını söyler, öyle de yapar. Öğreneceklerinin başına ne belalar açacağını nereden bilsin? Tam bir facia!

Kitabı hala okumamış olanlar önsözü kitabı bitirdikten sonra okursa çok daha iyi olur, yoksa kitabın sonunu okumuş olmak keyfinizi epey kaçırabilir. Epeydir okumayı düş
...more
Mahdi Lotfabadi
یک تراژدی به تمام معنا فوق‌العاده! واقعاً آدم نمی‌دونه چی بگه درباره‌ی نمایشنامه‌ای که 2500 سال پیش نوشته شده و انقدر حرفه‌ای داستان‌پردازی شده و انقدر دیالوگ‌هاش قویه! شدیداً توصیه می‌شه خوندنش!
Anastasia
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Τι φοβερό να ξέρεις την αλήθεια και να σου είναι ανώφελη.
Araz Goran
أوديب ملكاً - سوفوكليس




لم أتوقع أنني سأتأثر بهذه التراجيديا بعدما سمعتها مرات ومرات وكدت أن أفقد دهشة الحكاية لولا قرائتي لهذه المسرحية , كونها من أكثر القصص والأساطير اليونانية شهرة على الإطلاق, قلت آن لي أن أقرأ هذه المسرحية الشهيرة التي أستوحاها سوفوكليس من الاسطورة اليونانية المذكورة في ملحمة اليونان القديمة المعروفة بالإلياذة ..


جسدها سوفوكليس بعبقرية لا توصف وتراجيدية وفلسفة عميقة يشهد لها التاريخ ومازالت تثير الدهشة في قلب القارئ , وهي قصة أوديب الذي قتل أباه وتزوج من أمه بعد ذلك من دون أن
...more
Oziel Bispo
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Baseando-se no famoso mito de Édipo muito conhecido na época, o poeta Sófocles  compõe Édipo Rei , uma peça teatral que melhor representou esse mito e que ficou em primeiro lugar entre as três finalistas. Conta a luta de Édipo para descobrir a verdade sobre a morte do antigo rei  Laio da qual é acusado, e também sua luta para descobrir a verdade sobre si mesmo, verdade esta que é horrenda, surpreendente. Conta também sua luta para fugir das sinas profetizadas pelos Oráculos,quando ele  era ainda ...more
فؤاد
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
...more
David Sarkies
Apr 08, 2012 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 Gre
...more
SMLauri
Apr 26, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, clásicos
Pensaba que me iba a costar leerlo por el lenguaje pero para nada ha sido así. Es muy fácil de leer, y aunque es una historia que todos conocemos hay algún momento de sorpresa.
La única pega que le pongo es que es muy corto, podían haber dado algún rodeo en lugar de ir tan al grano, pero aún así he disfrutado mucho leyéndolo.
✨    jamieson   ✨
honestly, I feel bad for Oedipus. He left his house to do the right thing and try to avoid killing his dad, just to come across his real dad and kill him anyway. It's really unfortunate and it really sucks for him. And then he had to go and skewer his eyeballs like yikes he's not having a good time, is he ?

RIP Oedipus eyes, I'm sorry this happened to you. Honestly, I know this play is super tragic, and it actually is interesting how he tried to avoid his fate which led to him fulfilling it anywa
...more
Deniz Balcı
Feb 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ben Kral Oidupus'un Bordo/Siyah Dünya Klasikleri Serisinden çıkan versiyonunu okudum. Eser herkesin okuması, üzerine düşünmesi gereken antik bir kült.
Artık etkisi yalnız tiyatro sahnelerinde değil; sinemada, edebiyatta, şiirde, psikolojide sürekli olarak bize kendini gösteriyor. Bordo/Siyah versiyonunda Versel Atayman'ın yazmış olduğu önsöz nefis. Her açıdan Kral Oidipus'a bir bakış getirmiş. Hepimizin az çok bildiği ve kavradığı bu hikayeye; kısa ama çok yeterli/açıklayıcı bir makale yazmış. Çe
...more
Bam cooks the books ;-)
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
...more
Lauri
rated it it was amazing
Jan 25, 2007
Eric
rated it it was amazing
Feb 08, 2007
Bryan
rated it it was amazing
Feb 17, 2007
Rachel
Feb 18, 2007 added it
Killed his father, screwed his mother, poked his own eyes out with pins...pretty scandalous stuff to a 16 year-old in Western PA!!
nicole
rated it liked it
Feb 18, 2007
Alvaro
rated it really liked it
Feb 20, 2007
Stephen
rated it really liked it
Feb 22, 2007
Amanda
rated it it was amazing
Feb 26, 2007
Josh
rated it it was amazing
Feb 27, 2007
M
rated it really liked it
Feb 27, 2007
Dani Meier
rated it it was amazing
Feb 28, 2007
Tamar
rated it liked it
Feb 28, 2007
Janice
rated it liked it
Mar 09, 2007
Joel
rated it it was amazing
Mar 12, 2007
John
rated it it was amazing
Mar 16, 2007
PMP
rated it liked it
Mar 18, 2007
Mike
rated it liked it
Mar 18, 2007
Caitlin
rated it really liked it
Mar 20, 2007
Emily
rated it it was amazing
Mar 20, 2007
Austin
rated it liked it
Mar 20, 2007
Cote Smith
rated it really liked it
Mar 20, 2007
Brett Smith
rated it really liked it
Mar 20, 2007
Jacqueline
rated it liked it
Mar 20, 2007
John Devlin
Mar 21, 2007 rated it it was ok
The grandfather of hardcore tragedies. Kill your dad marry your mom - definitely Oedipus was having a bad year.
Meara
Mar 22, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: classics
Sufficiently tragic, disturbing and disgusting. What more can you want from a greek play?
Lucy
rated it liked it
Mar 24, 2007
Jennifer
rated it really liked it
Mar 26, 2007
Kimberly
rated it liked it
Mar 27, 2007
jevan
added it
Mar 29, 2007
azade
rated it really liked it
Apr 01, 2007
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Medea
  • Prometheus Bound
  • Agamemnon (Oresteia, #1)
  • The Bacchae
  • Hamlet
  • Eumenides (Ορέστεια, #3)
  • The Aeneid
  • Electra
  • The Iliad
  • The Odyssey
  • The Libation Bearers (Ορέστεια, #2)
  • A Doll's House
  • Macbeth
  • Frogs
  • Hamlet: Screenplay, Introduction And Film Diary
  • Lysistrata
  • The Oresteia: Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers, The Eumenides
  • Hippolytus
See similar books…
1,343 followers
Sophocles (born c. 496 bc, Colonus, near Athens [Greece]—died 406, Athens), (Greek: Σοφοκλής; German editions: Sophokles, Russian: Софокл, French editions: Sophocle) 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 ...more

Other books in the series

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

News & Interviews

Trying to figure out what to read next? Why not add some 2019 Goodreads Choice Award titles to your Want to Read list? After all, these popular...
72 likes · 19 comments
“To throw away an honest friend is, as it were, to throw your life away” 292 likes
“I have no desire to suffer twice, in reality and then in retrospect.” 221 likes
More quotes…