Oedipus the King Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Before he leaves, what does Oedipus say will happen?

2. What does Oedipus first say to Creon as he approaches?

3. What does the priest point out about Oedipus overcoming the Sphinx?

4. Who does the priest ask to come as the people's savior?

5. What does Oedipus accuse Creon of?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the chorus' attitude toward Oedipus, in his conflict with Creon?

2. What does Oedipus wish on the murderer?

3. How does Jocasta react to the messenger's news?

4. What favor did Jocasta do for the person who told her about Laius' death?

5. What reason does Oedipus give for coming himself to see the crowd of people who have gathered at the beginning of the play?

6. Explain the irony of Teiresias' blindness.

7. What does Oedipus say, when he finally finds out the truth about his past and his present situation?

8. When Oedipus is questioning Creon, why does he ask Creon how long it's been since Laius was killed?

9. What does Oedipus say when he hears Creon is approaching?

10. Which of his sins does Oedipus believe is the worst?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Discuss dramatic irony in OEDIPUS THE KING.

1) How does the fact that the audience knows the story of Oedipus affect the way the writer tells the story? How could the story be told differently, if the audience were unfamiliar with it?

2) How does dramatic irony affect the audience's perception of Oedipus? Is the audience more or less sympathetic toward Oedipus? Why or why not? How does the audience perceive Oedipus' quarrels with Teiresias and Creon?

3) How does dramatic irony affect the audience's perception of Jocasta?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss justice in the play.

1) What acts in the play call for retribution by the gods? Why are these acts singled out? What makes an act call for justice?

2) Are the gods in the play just or unjust? Does Oedipus truly deserve punishment?

3) How does a ruler mete out justice? Is Oedipus a just ruler? What qualities in a ruler promote justice? Use examples from the play.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the function of the chorus in the play.

1) Who does the chorus represent? What is their attitude toward Oedipus and the events that unfold?

2) How is the chorus similar to the play's audience? How is the chorus different form the audience?

3) Is the chorus always "right"? Do they reflect the attitude of the author?

(see the answer keys)

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