Oedipus of the characters endure some type of pathos,

Oedipus is a play written entirely about suffering. Most of the characters endure some type of pathos, and many do not survive. The greatest suffering is that of Iocaste and Oedipus. Iocaste has known about the prophecy since the oracle had predicted it would happen, but remains oblivious until she realizes and kills herself. Oedipus on the other hand, was born into the prophecy, with no way of avoiding it, but is told many times that he is the one that has killed his father and married his mother, but denies it. When he comes to the realization, he forces himself into a life of exile. Oedipus and Iocaste both suffer greatly, but whereas Oedipus could not prevent the outcome of the prophecy, Iocaste neglects the Gods and displays excessive hubris which leads her to believe she can avoid the prophecy without killing her son. Eventually, this brings on her downfall along with Oedipus’, resulting in Iocaste being the more tragic hero in Oedipus Rex.Iocastes’ peripeteia is unlike any other character’s in play.  As Iocaste says, ” Have no more fear of sleeping with your mother: how many men, in dreams, have lain with their mothers! No reasonable man is troubled by such things” (Sophocles 51). Iocaste was the only one who knew about the prophecy and because she had prior knowledge, she held the power to stop the revelation from happening. But, when Oedipus goes to Iocaste for help because he starts to suspect his role in the prophecy, rather than realizing the truth, instead she remains clueless and tries to convince Oedipus otherwise. She is figuratively blind, which brings upon her dreadful fate. But eventually, she comes to the realization herself. Sophocles writes, “And heard her wail for the double fruit of her marriage, a husband by her husband, children by her children… And there we saw her hanging, her body swaying from the cruel cord she had noosed about her neck.” (Sophocles 68). In an instant, she realizes how blind she was, how the entire destruction of Thebes is her fault, how the death of her husband and Oedipus’s downfall is her crime. Consumed with her guilt and disbelief, she decides to end her life quickly, in an effort to erase her pain as fast as possible. Although most characters in the play suffered profoundly, Iocaste was the only one who could have prevented the entire misfortune, and did not, rendering her suffering to be especially great. Oedipus, the man who has everything, a life most other people could only dream of, and by some strange twist of fate, ends up being the murderer of his father, and bears his mothers children. Oedipus says, “I pray that that man’s life be consumed in evil and wretchedness. And as for me, this curse applies no less” (Sophocles 14). His reversal of fortune comes solely because of his blindness, and his inability to accept the truth laid out in front of him. In the beginning of the play, Oedipus is determined to find the man responsible for the plague corrupting Thebes, and sends out a public address to the people. He curses the man in all the possible ways, and demands that any person who knows who this mystery man is, should be obligated to hand him in. It is ironic that as it turns out, he, himself was the ruiner of Thebes. When he finally accepts the truth, and quits denying the evidence, he comes to a realization that brings upon his downfall. Sophocles writes, “That were her ornaments and raised them, and plunged them down straight into his own eyeballs, crying ‘No more, no more shall you look at the misery about me, the horrors of my own doing!” (Sophocles 69). He is disgusted with himself, horrified by what he did and how blind he is, and decides to punish himself in the worst possible way, blind and banished from the land: forced to live the rest of his life in a silent exile. Additionally, Oedipus and Iocaste both have a fatal flaw that eventually destroys them. For Oedipus, his hamartia was hubris, pride against the Gods. Although Oedipus’ greatest act of hubris is when he tries to deny his fate. The Oracle told him that he was destined to kill his father and sleep with his mother. Oedipus tried to escape his fate by never returning to Corinth, the city where he grew up, and never seeing the people he believed were his parents again so as to ensure he wouldn’t fulfill it. Ironically, it was this deceitful action that led him to kill his real father and to marry his mother. Even when Tiresias explicitly tells him, he has completed the prophecy he denies it. “Teiresias ‘I say that you are the murderer whom you seek.’ Oedipus Now twice you spat out infamy. You’ll pay for it!” (20)  Ironically, it was this action that led him to kill his real father Laius and to marry his mother Iocaste. It’s unquestionable that by trying to avoid his fate Oedipus ended up doing the thing he feared the most. Moreover, Iocaste fatal flaw is her toying with the role of authority. Iocatse tries to convince Oedipus that oracles cannot be trusted,even though the people of Thebes are inclined to always believe the prophecies of the Oracles. Further, when Oedipus was a baby, Laos ordered that he be killed, but Iocaste did not mind her husbands’ authority and instead spared Oedipus’s life by giving him to the shepherd. As it says, “Oedipus My wife! Did she give it to you? Shepherd My lord she did… I was told to get rid of it” (Sophocles 63). Iocaste regards authority only when it suits her desires and intentions and she avoids it when she believes danger approaching. As the truth unfolds, Iocaste realizes she cannot run nor hide from it and finally commits suicide. Despite the fact that Oedipus has to live with his crimes all his life, he was born into the prophecy with no hope of avoiding it. Nevertheless, Iocaste, had the chance to prevent the prophecy from playing out but chose not to. Likewise, her disregard for authority and the prophecies of the oracles formed this conflict, caused the suffering of an entire state, and created  Oedipus’s downfall as well. Iocaste is the more tragic hero in Oedipus Rex, carrying the misery of numerous people on her shoulders.