Author biography

According to estimates, Sophocles, the author of the play Oedipus the King, was born in 496/497 BC in the small village of Colonus Hippius, which lies about 3 kilometers from the border of Athens, but still belongs to the city. Together with Aeschylus and Euripides, he belongs to the triad of great playwrights from the golden age of Athens. Sophocles’ father was probably very wealthy and provided him with an extensive education, which even included music and dance. Sophocles and his family were active in the educated circles of the city of Athens. 

Sophocles enjoyed a high reputation within the city, which is why he was given the honor to hold various political offices. Between 441 and 440 BC he held the office of strategist together with the important statesman Pericles. This was considered the most important state office of the time. At the time of Pericles, Athens had about 40,000 citizens with full civil rights. In addition, there were about 70,000 slaves and about 150,000 freedmen, but only half of them lived in the city. 

In the city of Athens in Sophocles' time, various festivities were held that were repeated annually, including a competition between various poets for the prize of best tragedy. Each year, three people were admitted. Each of them had to ...

The text shown above is just an extract. Only members can read the full content.

Get access to the full Study Guide.

As a member of PrimeStudyGuides.com, you get access to all of the content.

Sign up now

Already a member? Log in