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by Sophocles

The Chorus Timeline and Summary

  • Note: Although they pipe up only once in a while, the Chorus is present throughout the entire action of the play as an observer.
  • Upon learning that someone buried Polyneices, the Chorus chimes in that perhaps the burial was the will of the gods. Creon angrily responds that Polyneices spited the gods with his actions.
  • The Chorus comments on the strength and resilience of mankind.
  • Upon learning that Antigone buried Polyneices, the Chorus accuses her of being inclined to trouble like her father.
  • The Chorus laments life’s sufferings.
  • The Chorus tries to dissuade Creon from punishing Ismene, who clearly did not participate in Polyneices's burial.
  • Teiresias leaves, after offering his advice to Creon, and the Chorus reminds Creon that Teiresias is never wrong.
  • Creon is swayed by the Chorus’s urging to release Antigone and see to Polyneices’s burial.
  • The Chorus concludes quite happily that man can’t escape his doomed fate, but that hopefully we get smarter as we get older.