In the play Antigone, Creon, displays all of the characteristics of a Tragic Hero. As the new king of Thebes, he suffers from excessive pride, stubbornness, controlling demands, and evokes pity. His people look upon him as being inflexible and aloof. This deadly combination of characteristics inevitably leads to his downfall caused by his own unfortunate actions.
In the beginning of the play, Creon is the antagonist and the audience views him as being villainous; and this influences the readers to side with Antigone. The conflict between the two characters increases as the play goes on. When Creon discovers that Antigone is the lawbreaker he shows no mercy even though she is his niece and is also to be wed to his son. He declares her to be executed. Soon after, Creon’s son Haemon pleads for Antigone’s release, but his arrogant father mocks him, ignoring his worries. An angry Haemon runs away, hurt that his father has treated him like this. Antigone is sent outside of Thebes to starve to death in a cave. While Antigone is suffering this unfortunate fate, the blind prophet Teiresias warns Creon that the gods are very angry that he has refused burial for Polyneices, since the very same dogs and birds that eat his flesh are later used for sacrifices. As a result, Creon’s son will die in punishment. Mocking Teiresias, Creon does not listen to this advice, saying that Teiresias just wants to scare him. However this all changes after the Chorus reminds him that Teiresias has never been wrong about anything.
In the story Antigone Creon showed that to much power will corrupt anyone. As Creon became blessed with total control his character, principals, and his judgement deteriorated. Antigone was written by a man named Sophocles. He was a man that did an excellent job of showing how absolute power will corrupt absolutely. Using Creon's utmost authority, Sophocles told of how everything he once stood for ...
Creon suddenly has a change of heart and becomes extremely worried and scared for the fate of his son. He goes to the body of Polyneices to finally perform a proper burial and cremates the body’s remains. Then he goes to free Antigone from the cave where she is imprisoned, but it is too late. Creon finds Atigone hanging by a rope, and Haemon standing there weeping beneath her. After trying to attack Creon, Haemon stabs himself and dies holding Antigone’s body in his arms. Creon is devastated.
A broken man, Creon returns to the palace only to learn that his wife Eurydice has also commited suicide after learning about her son’s death. Creon begins to realize the extent of his mistakes and cries out in despair. The audience realizes Creon’s faults and sympathizes with him. His villainous character gradually becomes more human after we realize the situations Creon experiences. We see how he has to deal with the turmoil in the city caused by the war between his nephews, in addition to putting himself at odds with the Gods by ignorant choices he made earlier in the play. He now must live with his guilt, a fallen hero, a classic tragic figure.
In conclusion to be a good leader you must have the rock solid principals to fall back on in times of stress. Creon lost grasp of these, and that contributed to his failure as a leader. By tragically losing all, one is forced to feel sympathy toward him, by doing what he always thought was right, and what he thought would further protect his kingdom, he is regarded as a hero. These elements combine his stubbornness, controlling demands, and self-pride made Creon a true ancient Greek ‘’tragic hero’’.