I actually look like this chick.
I think we might be related.
So today I’m going to talk to your about Oedipus – The original mother fucker!
Oedipus was the son of Laius and Jocasta, king and queen of Thebes. After having been married some time without children, his parents consulted the Oracle of Apollo at Delphi about their childlessness. The Oracle prophesied that if Laius should have a son, the son would kill him and marry Jocasta. In an attempt to prevent this prophecy’s fulfillment, when Jocasta indeed bore a son, Laius had his ankles pinned together and gave the boy to a servant to abandon on the nearby mountain. However, rather than leave the child to die as Laius intended, the sympathetic servant passed the baby onto a shepherd from Corinth. Little Oedipus (so named after the injuries to his feet, from when they were pinned together as a child) came to the house of Polybus, king of Corinth and his queen, Merope, who were without children of their own.
Many years later, Oedipus is told by a drunk that Polybus is not his real father but when he asks his parents, they deny it. Oedipus, unsure, seeks counsel from the same Delphic Oracle. The Oracle does not tell him the identity of his true parents but instead tells him that he is destined to couple with his mother and kill his father (though not specifying in which order). In his attempt to avoid the fate predicted by the Oracle, he decides to flee from Corinth to Thebes.
As Oedipus travels he comes to the place where three roads meet, Davlia. Here he encounters a chariot, driven by his (unrecognized) birth-father, King Laius. They fight over who has the right to go first and Oedipus kills Laius in self defense, unwittingly fulfilling part of the prophecy. The only witness of the king’s death was a slave who fled from a caravan of slaves also traveling on the road.
Continuing his journey to Thebes, Oedipus encounters a Spinx which would stop all those who traveled to Thebes and ask them a riddle. If the travelers were unable to answer correctly, they were eaten by the sphinx; if they were successful, they would be able to continue their journey. The riddle was: “What walks on four feet in the morning, two in the afternoon and three at night?”. Oedipus answers: “Man; as an infant, he crawls on all fours, as an adult, he walks on two legs and, in old age, he relies on a walking stick”. Oedipus was the first to answer the riddle correctly. Having heard Oedipus’ answer, the Sphinx is astounded and inexplicably kills itself, freeing Thebes. Grateful, the people of Thebes appoint Oedipus as their king and give him the recently widowed Queen Jocasta’s hand in marriage. (The people of Thebes believed her husband had been killed while on a search for the answer to the Sphinx’s riddle. They had no idea who the killer was.) The marriage of Oedipus and Jocasta fulfilled the rest of the prophecy. Oedipus and Jocasta have four children: two sons, Polynices and Eteocles (see Seven Against Thebes), and two daughters, Antigone and Ismene.
Many years after the marriage of Oedipus and Jocasta, a plague of infertility strikes the city of Thebes; crops no longer grow to harvest and women do not bear children. Oedipus, in his hubris, asserts that he will end the pestilence. He sends Creon, Jocasta’s brother, to the Oracle at Delphi, seeking guidance. When Creon returns, Oedipus hears that the murderer of the former King Laius must be found and either be killed or exiled. In a search for the identity of the killer, Oedipus follows Creon’s suggestion and sends for the blind prophet, Tiresias, who warns him not to try to find the killer. In a heated exchange, Tiresias is provoked into exposing Oedipus himself as the killer, and the fact that Oedipus is living in shame because he does not know who his true parents are. Oedipus blames Creon for Tiresias telling Oedipus that he was the killer. Oedipus and Creon begin a heated argument. Jocasta enters and tries to calm Oedipus. She tries to comfort him by telling him about her old husband and his supposed death. Oedipus becomes unnerved as he begins to think that he might have killed Laius and so brought about the plague. Suddenly, a messenger arrives from Corinth with the news that King Polybus has died and that the people of Corinth would have Oedipus as their king. Oedipus is relieved concerning the prophecy, for it could no longer be fulfilled if Polybus, whom he thinks is his father, is now dead.
Nonetheless, he is wary while his mother lives and does not wish to go. To ease the stress of the matter, the messenger then reveals that Oedipus was, in fact, adopted. Jocasta, finally realizing Oedipus’ true identity, begs him to abandon his search for Laius’ murderer. Oedipus misunderstands the motivation of her pleas, thinking that she was ashamed of him because he might have been the son of a slave. She then goes into the palace where she hangs herself. Oedipus seeks verification of the messenger’s story from the very same herdsman who was supposed to have left Oedipus to die as a baby. From the herdsman, Oedipus learns that the infant raised as the adopted son of Polybus and Merope was the son of Laius and Jocasta. Thus, Oedipus finally realizes in great agony that so many years ago, at the place where three roads meet, he had killed his own father, King Laius, and as consequence, married his mother, Jocasta.
Oedipus goes in search of Jocasta and finds she has killed herself. Taking two pins from her dress, Oedipus gouges his eyes out. Oedipus asks Creon to look after his daughters, for his sons are old and mature enough to look after themselves, and to be allowed to touch them one last time before he is exiled. His daughter Antigone acts as his guide as he wanders blindly through the country, ultimately dying at Colonus after being placed under the protection of Athens by King Theseus.
His two sons, Eteocles and Polynices, arrange to share the kingdom, each taking an alternating one-year reign. However, Eteocles refuses to cede his throne after his year as king. Polynices brings in an army to oust Eteocles from his position, and a battle ensues. At the end of the battle, the brothers kill each other. Jocasta’s brother, Creon, takes the throne. He decides that Polynices was a “traitor,” and should not be given burial rites. Defying this edict, Antigone attempts to bury her brother and, for this trespass, Creon has her buried in a rock cavern where she hangs herself.
There are many different endings to the legend of Oedipus due to its oral tradition. Significant variations on the legend of Oedipus are mentioned in fragments by several ancient Greek poets including Homer, Hesiod and Pindar. Most of what is known of Oedipus comes from the set of Theban plays by Sophocles: Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus, and Antigone.