Creon: A Voice of Reason In the drama Oedipus Rex, Oedipus' role as protagonist is supported primarily by Creon, who provides a voice of reason and stability throughout the play in contrast to the highly charged and emotional character, Oedipus. Oedipus provides most of the drama, excitement and the emotion in the play, which in turn brings out the rational nature in Creon. This happens time and time again during the play; we have Oedipus, the instigator, supported by Creon the stabilizer. Creon's rational nature is demonstrated throughout the play when he reacts to Oedipus' challenges, emotions and ranting. In the end Creon's use of reason and his calming nature support the conclusion of the drama by helping to cure the "defilement" (prologue. line 100), Oedipus.
In support of the main character, Creon's role is that of a man who is trusted by Oedipus and by the people of Thebes. He is loyal to the King and he is respected for his judgment. Creon is introduced with his trip to Delphi. Oedipus sent his loyal brother-n-law to consult with Apollo. Creon's return marks the beginning of the downfall of the King. True to his nature, Creon takes a calm and rational approach to giving Oedipus the news from Apollo.
His advice to give the news in private is rejected by the "characteristically impatient Oedipus" (Nort wick 33). In true form, Creon respects the Kings wish and tells him the news he has from Apollo in public. This shows how the character is used to contrast the emotional protagonist. As the drama begins to unfold, Creon shows his rational nature in response to the "heavy accusations" (scene 2. line 2) of murder made against him by the King. Instead of overacting, Creon questions his fellow citizens about the nature of the accusations.
When confronted by Oedipus, Creon: does not hesitate to question the king's impulsive allegations. He stands up for himself and argues for it even with the king. He treasures his integrity of character and his loyalty above everything else. () Creon responds to each accusation rationally and tries to get Oedipus to think about what he is saying. Creon agrees to punishment if proven guilty but he knows that he is not. In this role Creon is providing the adversary to Oedipus.
Since Creon is such a well respected person, his denial of the accusations is believable. Choragus tells Oedipus to "Respect Creon's word." (scene 2. line 134) Io caste is also persuaded by what Creon says. This makes Oedipus begin to question himself.
Creon's role in this situation supports the drama by making the main character come to realize the awful thing that he did, which turns the whole play around. Creon's character pushes Oedipus to realize his fate. Creon can accomplish this because of the way his character has been set up from the beginning of the play. He has been tried and true and has supported Oedipus the king by being obedient. Now Creon is supporting Oedipus the character by confronting his accusations.
And now he supports the story line by pushing the main character in a dramatic direction. As Creon enters at the end of the play and finds an emotionally distraught Oedipus, he again approaches the situation calmly and rationally. Another character might have tried to take advantage of Oedipus and destroy him and take everything he has, but Creon handles the situation calmly and treats Oedipus with dignity. Creon's Oedipus having realized what he did wrong went to the much wiser man Creon who has made him understand what he did and why it happened. Oedipus asks Creon to drive him out of the country and to be killed, but Creon does not act on impulse and without advice from the gods. Creon shows is faith and respect for the divine laws.
() Creon's nature shows once again when he is kind to Oedipus and thinks of his children and brings them to him. Creon knows how much the children mean to him and knows that Oedipus can not be a father / brother figure to them anymore. Oedipus sees Creon's supreme nature () and trust him enough to leave him his daughters when he is banished from Thebes. Creon shows that he can be gentle while dealing with situations and proves himself once again that he is sensible and responsible. Through out the whole play Oedipus Rex Creon's role was that of a loyal statesman. His character traits showed in many situations that he had to deal with.
The people of Thebes knew Creon well and trusted his word even when is word was questioned by the king.