What made Oedipus go to the oracle when he was young?

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Susan Woodward | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

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In Act II, Oedipus relates how, when he was young, he had heard rumors at a banquet that he was not really the son of the King and Queen of Corinth, so he went to the oracle at Delphi to ask for clarification.  It was there that the oracle told Oedipus that he was fated to kill his father and to marry his mother.  Horrified, Oedipus forgot about the rumors that claimed he wasn't the Corinthian king's son, and he left town so as to avoid fulfilling the prophecy.  Ironically, when he ran away, Oedipus ran into his real father, Laios, on the road, had an altercation with him, and killed him...all the while not knowing the man's identity.  This was the beginning of the fulfillment of the oracle's prophecy.


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