Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Structure of ANTIGONE


1. Prologue: Antigone asks for her sister Ismene's help in burying their brother Polyneices. Ismene refusesand Antigone rejects her sister.
 2. Parodos: The chorus enters, rejoicing and thanking the gods that the attack of Polyneices has been defeated and Thebes is safe.
3. First Episode: Creon enters, and reveals his plan to bury Eteocles but leave Polyneices unburied. A sentry enters, and reports that someone has tried to bury Polyneices. Creon is angered, and threatens the sentry.
4. First Stasimon: The chorus dances and sings its Ode to Man ("Many are the wonders, none is more wonderful than what is man.")
5. Second Episode: Antigone is brought before Creon, and confesses that she buried her brother. She and Creon argue, and Creon decrees she will die. Ismene is led in, and claims she helped her sister. Antigone rejects her help.
6. Second Stasimon: The chorus reflects on the destiny of Antigone's house, fate, and the nature of a divine curse.
7. Third Episode: Haemon argues with his father Creon, and leaves. Creon decrees that Antigone be entombed alive in a cave.
8. Third Stasimon: The chorus sings a song about the power of the god Eros.
9. Fourth Episode: Antigone, lamenting her fate to the chorus, is led to the cave.
10. Fourth Stasimon: The chorus compares Antigone's fate and imprisonment to that of three others: Danae, Lycurgus, and Cleopatra.
11. Fifth Episode: Teiresias enters, and tells Creon he has made a grave mistake. Creon realizes his mistake, and rushes to bury Polyneices and release Antigone.
12. Fifth Choral Ode: The chorus invokes Dionysus, the god who protects Thebes.
13. Exodus: A messenger reports the deaths of Antigone and Haemon. Euridyce, Creon's wife, commits suicide. Creon laments his losses.


Ancient Greek masks were painted.
This is supposed to be King Creon.
    (Tell me how you know this is not an Ancient Greek Mask?)

(This is the DVD cover for the "modern" 20th century French playwright's
version of Antigone's story, translated into English.
It might confuse you to see it now, before your A.P. Exam, since you
will be writing about Sophocles' Antigone. So,
I'll show it to you after you take the test in May. Okay?)


  1. I thought it was pretty funny that the chorus came and mistaken Antigone's actions for the actions of a God. That could be considered Irony. Also the chrous' speach, Creon threatend him by saying he could be mistaken for an old man! HA! I love how Creon threatend the gaurd as well!

  2. From what you wrote Mr. Balgley on the structure of Antigone, it reminds me of Shakespear's tragedies,for example death takes place in this play. But what's unique about the death in this play, is that Creon was left to live while the other's died around him, leaving him to suffer, which is what I find interesting. In my opinion if this would have been one of Shakespears's tragedies, I think Creon would have died as well, because usually in Shakespeare's tragedies most of the main character's die.

  3. Oh this plays of the old ages were as dark as the films of today. (not the blockbusters I'm talking about independent films)

  4. I have to agree with Brittany! Antigone reminds me of Shakespeare's tragedies. Antigone declares her intention to defy Creon's decree against burying her brother, Polynices. She also observes that this decree seems aimed directly at her.

  5. My Comment has nothing to do with the Structure of Antigone but I just wanted to inform you that I'm really liking this Play..

  6. I also agree with Brittany. I feel like there's one person that the author didn't want to die with the rest of the people so he must be someone special that should be left in this world. Tragedies are meant for someone to die but I feel like this main character lived while in Shakespeare, the protagonists died.

  7. Ok so out of all the plays and boring books, i actually layed down to read this entire play. I loved it there was something that caught my attention very fast...

  8. Yes, Sophocles is quite an extraordinary playwright!

  9. I believe that Creon was meant to stay alive and watch his loved ones around him die so that he could suffer a diffferent way. In a way he suffereed a fate worse than death becuase he had to watch the people around him commit suicide because of a selfish mistake he made. I like this better because it shows that death is not the only way to suffer.

  10. Yes Alyssa, his fate and suffering was worse than his son's or his wife's! I guess you like to see transgressors punished.

  11. I liked how Sophocles instead of just making Creon die in the play, he made it different by keeping him alive and let Creon suffer by watching everyone else around him die.

  12. I think the idea of having Creon be the last man standing makes this play even more of a tragedy, as the reader can see there is in fact a lesson learned. I agree completely with Alyssa's comment.