Antigone Study Guide Questions

What is Creon’s decree? (Prologue and Parados) Creon has decreed that no one is allowed to bury or mourn for Polyneices.
What is the punishment for disobeying Creon’s decree?(Prologue and Parados) The punishment is getting stoned publicly in the square.
How are Antigone and Ismene contrasted in the first lines of the play?(Prologue and Parados) Antigone is more daring an rebellious than Ismene. Antigone is willing to risk her life to give her brother a proper burial, which has just been declared as illegal. Ismene, on the other hand, is loyal to the law, even stating that “we must give in to the law,” (line 48).
Reread Line 35, what does this statement reveal about Antigone?(Prologue and Parados) This statement reveal that Antigone is audacious and daring. She is willing to go against the king just to bury her brother.
Explain Ismene’s argument against aiding Antigone as she explains it in Lines 36-52.(Prologue and Parados) From Lines 36 to 52, Ismene argues that as women, they are not strong enough to go against Creon. She adds that it will be impossible for them to go against Creon’s decree, so it isn’t worth dying over such a impractical task.
Antigone’s last lines (77-81) reveal her reason for burying her brother. What is this reason?(Prologue and Parados) Antigone’s reason for burying her brother is because she believes the worst death is one without honor. The Greeks believed that one of the worst actions you could do was to not bury someone. Antigone believes that, as Polyneices’ sister, it is her responsibility to honor him through burial.
What is the Prologue about?(Prologue and Parados) The Prologue is about the discussion between Antigone and Ismene about whether or not to bury their brother Polyneices. Creon, the king, has decreed that it is illegal to mourn and bury Polyneices. Antigone wants to honor her brother and bury him, but Ismene would rather submit to the law and not risk her life.
What is the Parados about?(Prologue and Parados) The Parados gives the audience background information on Polyneices, as well as the battle that had just been fought. The Chorus portrays Polyneices as an arrogant backstabber who betrayed and attacked Thebes.
In Creon’s words to the Chorus, he uses a metaphor to describe the situation of Thebes. What is it?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) Creon uses the metaphor of a ship that has passed through a storm recently to describe Thebes’ current situation. The ship symbolizes Thebes, while the storm represents Polyneices and his army.
In Lines 11-30, Creon explains why his new subjects should be loyal to him. What is his explanation of them?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) Creon, in his speech from Lines 11 to 30, believes that his subjects should be loyal to him because they were loyal to their past leaders, so as the next king he should have their loyalty.
What reasons does Creon give for not allowing Polyneices to be buried?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) Creon does not allow Polyneices to be buried because he broke his exile, just to come back to Thebes and attack the city.
How does the end of Creon’s speech (Lines 43-47) differ from the beginning?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) The end of Creon’s speech differs from the beginning because in the beginning he addresses the Chorus as if everyone was friends and casually talk; however, at the end he attempts to instill fear into the Chorus by warning them of the consequences of going against the city.
What do Lines 56-57 reveal about Creon’s character?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) Lines 56-57 reveal that Creon is ready to accept death, and believes that you can not buy your way out of death. He states that death is certain for every person, no matter how wealthy you are.
What news is the Sentry reluctant to deliver?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) The Sentry is reluctant to tell Creon that someone has buried Polyneices.
Retell the order of events of the Sentry’s story in Lines 80-102.(Scene 1 and Ode 1) The corporal points out the body in the morning, and it was fully buried. They couldn’t see any footprints, so they couldn’t tell who buried Polyneices. The group of guards began accusing each other of burying Polyneices. They finally stopped arguing, and threw dice to decide who should tell Creon that Polyneices was buried.
What do Lines 104-112 reveal about Creon?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) These lines reveal that Creon does not believe it was done by the gods. This shows that he does not believe in destiny, or that everything happens because of the gods’ decisions.
In the first 3 stanzas of Ode 1, what does the Chorus explain are the powers of man?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) The first three stanzas state that man can control natural objects, like water and animals. Man can also control his words and thoughts.
Using the final stanza of Ode 1, why do you think the Chorus supports Creon?(Scene 1 and Ode 1) The Chorus supports Creon because they believe that without laws, like Creon’s decree, the city is nothing

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