Pride Pride is not a symbol for strength, but of arrogance. It does not modify you as a powerful individual, but as a weakling with feign courage. It is not something to be proud of, for it veils you with vanity and ignorance so delicately and innocently that it betrays your conscience into thinking that it is a normal feeling that has no consequence whatsoever. An example of this infamous trap is presented in the play of tragedy Antigone, written by Sophocles himself. A character by the name of Creon was a victim of pride born from his position as ruler of the city of Thebes.
It wasn’t long before he wallowed in sorrow, as pride swallowed in whole, smothering his familial views, killing his feel for care, and taking its place beside the ones he loved so. The motive by which Creon committed was a lethal mistake. His law of a deadly penalty crushed his son’s wife’s heart. That wife, Antigone, was determined to break his law to her love’s expense. She was not content with her brother’s improper burial and of his title, the “Traitor of Thebes”. Although she was aware of his treacherous actions, she was not about to stand back and watch her own blood and flesh rot to the ground, with no recognition or remembrance. I was born to join in love, not hate- that is my nature. ” (Line 590) So she was determined to become a “glorified criminal”, determined to bury her mother’s son. “I will bury him myself. And even if I die in the act, that death will be a glory. ” (Line 86). Creon believed her foolish, disloyal, yet passionate and wild. He ignored her views and spit on her face, as he responded, “Go down below and love, if love you must-love the dead! While I’m alive, no woman is going to lord it over me. ” (Lines 592-594) This proves of Creon’s pride, his blindness at the sight before him.
He will not allow Antigone dominate his authority, which is translation for ‘I will disregard my son’s useless wife because she is a woman, a weaker being under me, not because she is part of my family. ’ As the ruler of Thebes, it is understandable that Creon takes his job seriously and sets it on his priority list. However, his worst mistake was that his family came second, if not third. He valued his proud position of head of state, and would not tolerate any disloyal act, hence his law of prohibition of Polynices’s mourn.
He does not care if Polynices was, too, part of his family, merely tossed him aside because he wounded Creon’s pride. He did not care when Haemon pleaded him with his eyes and struggled to help his father notice his blunder before it was too late. “You’ve seen trees by a raging winter torrent, how many sway with the flood and salvage every twig, but not the stubborn-they’re ripped out, roots and all. Bend or break… Oh give away. Relax your anger – change! ” (Lines 797-800, 804) However, as ignorant as ever, Creon takes no notice of the large warning sign below his nose. So, men our age, we’re supposed to be lectured, are we? – schooled by a boy his age? …This boy, I do believe, is fighting on her side, the woman’s side. ” (Lines 813-815, 828-829) He does not realize the severe consequences that are about to follow his mistakes. Because of the death sentence hovering and raining down on Antigone, his wife, his hero, Haemon became intoxicated with sorrow and despair. He threatened another life loss following Antigone’s potential death, a threat dangerously tossed aside.
After Antigone was found hung in the bricked imprisonment, Haemon was driven to take his sword to his chest, a tragedy Eurydice, Creon’s wife, could not bear. Three deaths, three losses, three strikes and Creon was out. Too many warnings were blown his way, and was blessed with many opportunities to prevent the calamity that took place. “Take these things to heart, my son, I warn you… Stubbornness brands you for stupidity – pride is a crime. ” (Lines 1131, 1136-1137) Sadly, he let his brick wall made of the finest feign courage get in his way.
He let his pride take control of his life decisions. Once he tried to amend his errors, he had fallen low, and it was too late. Pride had given his loved ones to death at its doorstep, and abandoned Creon like an empty shell. Pride must not be let in control in any circumstance. It disguises itself with a foreign innocence that backstabs you once you give it an ounce of trust. Antigone is the perfect example of pride empowering a ruler, who tried to rid of the pest a second too late. Would you be a proud ruler, or the ruler of pride? You decide.