Q:

What are some examples of dramatic irony in "Antigone"?

A:

Quick Answer

Sophocles' tragedy "Antigone" contains dramatic irony with the decision of Creon to bury one of Antigone's brothers with honor but not the other and with Antigone's determination and strength when contrasted with the characters' view of women as weak. In addition, Creon's dialogue often is filled with verbal irony stemming from his lack of awareness of the truth, which contrasts with the reader's knowledge.

Continue Reading
What are some examples of dramatic irony in "Antigone"?
Credit: Lipnitzki Roger Viollet Getty Images

Full Answer

As the play opens, Antigone is very aware of the irony involved in the fact that Creon has decreed that one of her brother's be accorded a hero's burial while her other brother is left to rot for political reasons. This sets up a greater dramatic irony when Antigone, considered to be weak because she is a woman, shows more moral strength than the men around her by vowing to bury her brother Polyneices herself.

Antigone's decision to bury her brother ignites a further dramatic irony when Creon declares vengeance against whoever dared to bury Polyneices against his orders. The irony here stems from the fact that the viewer is aware that Antigone was responsible for the burial while Creon is not aware.

Creon's verbal irony continues when he is warned by a prophet that Thebes is to be destroyed by the choices being made. Creon makes sweeping statements against those he considers to be "shameful," without being aware that he is talking about himself. Creon further expounds on the weakness of women without being cognizant of the fact that Antigone, a woman, has caused the fall of the city.

Learn more about Plays

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the themes in "Antigone"?

    A:

    The major themes in "Antigone," the play written by Sophocles in or before 441 B.C., include natural law, pride, gender, blindness vs. sight, civil disobedience, family loyalty, and free will vs. fate. It also broaches the conflict between the individual and the state, as well as the differences between moral and divine law.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Where is the setting of Antigone?

    A:

    Sophocles' "Antigone," the climactic play in his Theban trilogy, is set entirely outside the palace gates of Thebes in Ancient Greece. A disastrous rebellion has just led to the deaths of Antigone's brothers.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a list of dramatic devices?

    A:

    School Work Helper gives a list of dramatic devices, such as dramatic irony, paradox, soliloquy, aside and tragedy. Dramatic irony occurs when the reader knows information that the characters in the play do not know.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is "Brothers Menaechmus" about?

    A:

    Plautus's comedy play "Brothers Menaechmus" (perhaps better known as "Menaechmi" or "The Twin Brothers") follows the story of a man as he tracks down his twin. The two were close in early childhood but are accidentally separated at seven years old.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore