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. Who does Teiresias accuse as the murderer?

2. How has Teiresias' pronouncement made the chorus feel?

3. What does Oedipus say about the fact that Laius' death wasn't looked into before?

4. What does Creon say has caused the disasters to the town?

5. Who does Teiresias say he serves?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Oedipus's attitude toward Creon when Creon returns.

2. What troubles have affected the people of Thebes?

3. What is Teiresias referring to when he says Oedipus and his children will be "equals"?

4. What does Oedipus accuse Teiresias of, that finally forces the prophet's tongue?

5. Why is Oedipus concerned about Creon at the beginning of the play?

6. Describe how the townspeople view Oedipus.

7. Explain the irony of Teiresias' blindness.

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

9. Describe what the people of Thebes have with them at the beginning of the play.

10. Why does Oedipus offer a deal to the murderer and set rules for the people of Thebes?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the nature of power and leadership in the play.

1) What qualities make a good leader in the play? Who would make a better leader, Oedipus or Creon?

2) What are the benefits and drawbacks of power in the play? How do Oedipus and Creon view power?

3) How does Jocasta affect Oedipus's leadership in the play?

4) What role do the gods play in leadership? Compare the power of the gods to the power of men.

(see the answer keys)

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