|Who is it?||Ancient Greek Poet|
|Birth Place||Hippeios Colonus, Athens, Greece, Greek|
|Died On||406/405 BC (aged 90-92)\nAthens|
|Notable work(s)||Ajax Antigone Oedipus Rex Electra Oedipus at Colonus|
Fragments of Ichneutae (Tracking Satyrs) were discovered in Egypt in 1907. These amount to about half of the play, making it the best preserved satyr play after Euripides' Cyclops, which survives in its entirety. Fragments of the Epigoni were discovered in April 2005 by classicists at Oxford University with the help of infrared Technology previously used for satellite imaging. The tragedy tells the story of the second siege of Thebes. A number of other Sophoclean works have survived only in fragments, including:
The plays were written across thirty-six years of Sophocles' career and were not composed in chronological order, but instead were written in the order Antigone, Oedipus Rex, and Oedipus at Colonus. Nor were they composed as a trilogy – a group of plays to be performed together, but are the remaining parts of three different groups of plays. As a result, there are some inconsistencies: notably, Creon is the undisputed king at the end of Oedipus Rex and, in consultation with Apollo, single-handedly makes the decision to expel Oedipus from Thebes. Creon is also instructed to look after Oedipus' daughters Antigone and Ismene at the end of Oedipus Rex. By contrast, in the other plays there is some struggle with Oedipus' sons Eteocles and Polynices in regard to the succession. In Oedipus at Colonus, Sophocles attempts to work these inconsistencies into a coherent whole: Ismene explains that, in light of their tainted family lineage, her brothers were at first willing to cede the throne to Creon. Nevertheless, they eventually decided to take charge of the monarchy, with each brother disputing the other's right to succeed. In addition to being in a clearly more powerful position in Oedipus at Colonus, Eteocles and Polynices are also culpable: they consent (l. 429, Theodoridis, tr.) to their father's going to exile, which is one of his bitterest charges against them.
Ajax focuses on the proud hero of the Trojan War, Telamonian Ajax, who is driven to treachery and eventually suicide. Ajax becomes gravely upset when Achilles’ armor is presented to Odysseus instead of himself. Despite their enmity toward him, Odysseus persuades the kings Menelaus and Agamemnon to grant Ajax a proper burial.