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Sophocles Biography

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Sophocles was an old Greek writer and one of three antiquated Greek tragedians whose plays have survived. His plays had a place with the period after Aeschylus and prior of Euripides. In view of the data gave by Suda, a tenth century reference book, Sophocles composed 123 plays amid his lifetime, out of which just seven have made due in a total frame.

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These plays are Ajax, Antigone, Trachinian Women, Oedipus the King, Electra, Philoctetes and Oedipus at Colonus. It was trusted that he remained the most praised writer in the emotional rivalries of the city-province of Athens held amid the religious celebrations of the Lenaea and the Dionysia. Sophocles partook in thirty rivalries, of which he won 24 and never went beneath second place in the rest. Among his plays, the two most popular tragedies, Oedipus and Antigone are by and large known as the Theban plays, despite the fact that each have had a place with an influence of an alternate quadruplicate. Sophocles incredibly affected the dramatization. His primary commitment was the expansion of third performing artist which diminished the significance of the melody in the introduction of the plot. A cavity on the surface of Mercury has been after this pro Greek writer and dramatist.


Sophocles Childhood and Life

Sophocles was the child of Sophilus, who was a rich individual from the country deme (little group) of Colonus Hippius. Sophocles was said to have been conceived in Attica. It is said that he was conceived couple of years before the Battle of Marathon in 490 BC, which is presumably around 497/6 BC.

Sophocles got his first creative accomplishment in 468 BC, when he won initially prize in the Dionysia theater rivalry over the prevailing expert of Athenian dramatization, Aeschylus. As per Greek student of history Plutarch, this triumph was very bizarre. Not at all like the standard custom of picking judges by parcel, the archon asked Cimon and the other strategoi present to choose the victor of the challenge. As per him in the wake of being vanquished, Aeschylus left for Sicily.

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“Triptolemus” was one among the plays that Sophocles introduced at this celebration. At the point when Sophocles was sixteen, he was driven the paean, a choral serenade to a God, commending the Greek triumph over the Persians at the Battle of Salamis. He was one of the ten strategoi, high official authorities that directed the military and was the lesser partner of Pericles.

In the start of his vocation, Sophocles got support from the legislator Cimon. Notwithstanding when Cimon was segregated by Pericles (Cimon’s opponent) in 461 BC, Sophocles got no mischief. In 443/442 he wound up noticeably one of the Hellenotamiai, or treasurers of Athena, and had the part to help dealing with the funds of the city amid the political command of Pericles. In view of the records of the Vita Sophoclis, he filled in as a general in the Athenian crusade against Samos in 441 BC.

It was trusted that Sophocles got this post in light of his written work of Antigone. In 420 BC, when Asclepius was acquainted with Athens, he invited it and set up a holy place for the picture of god at his home. In 413, Sophocles was chosen one of the officials who responded to the cataclysmic obliteration of the Athenian expeditionary power in Sicily amid the Peloponnesian War.


Personal Life

Sophocles initially wedded to Nicostrata, with whom he had a child named Iophon. In the later life, he had association with a lady of Sicyon. She bore him a child called Ariston. It was trusted that he had three more children, yet there isn’t much data about them.



In the winter of 406/405 BC, Sophocles kicked the bucket at ninety years old or ninety one. Like alternate acclaimed men from the old history, his passing additionally roused numerous fanciful stories. One of the stories expresses that he kicked the bucket from the strain of attempting to discuss a long sentence from his play, “Antigone” without delaying to calmly inhale. Though the other story recommends that he stifled to death while eating grapes at the Anthesteria celebration in Athens. The third story accounts that he kicked the bucket because of inordinate bliss over winning his last triumph at the City Dionysia.

photo via wikipedia


The most punctual commitment of Sophocles to the dramatization was the presentation of the third performing artist which hugely decreased the part of the chorale and made better open doors for character advancement and struggle between characters. Indeed, even his rival Aeschylus, who overwhelmed Athenian writers amid Sophocles’ initial profession, acknowledged the new thought and embraced it into his own particular work towards the finish of his life. Aristotle gave Sophocles the credit of the presentation of skenographia, or view painting. After the demise of Aeschylus in 456 BC, Sophocles turned into the praised dramatist in Athens.

He rose triumphant in various emotional rivalries, 18 at Dionysia and 6 at Lenaea celebrations. Aside from making advancements in the emotional structure, he was likewise known for his more profound improvement of characters than the prior dramatists. His across the board notoriety helped him to get welcome from outside rulers to go to their courts, however not at all like different dramatists Aeschylus who kicked the bucket in Sicily, or Euripides who invested energy in Macedon, he never acknowledged any of these solicitations.

Sophocles works were powerful and noteworthy for the Greek culture. Two out of his seven plays can be evaluated effectively to their correct dates, which to be specific are “Philoctetes” (409 BC) and “Oedipus at Colonus” (401 BC, organized after his demise by his grandson). From whatever is left of his plays, “Electra” had striking likenesses to these two plays which put advances the way that it was composed in the later piece of his scholarly vocation.

Again in view of the complex qualities of “Oedipus the King” which came in his center period, “Ajax”, “Antigone” and “The Trachiniae” had a place with his initial days. Sophocles had additionally composed three Theban plays in particular, “Oedipus the King”, “Oedipus at Colonus” and “Antigone”. All these plays depicted the destiny of Thebes amid and after the rule of King Oedipus. These plays were some of the time even distributed under a solitary cover. Sophocles had composed these plays in independent celebration rivalries with quite a while of distinction between them.

They can’t be called set of three due to the nearness of irregularities among them. Aside from these, Sophocles should have composed couple of more Theban plays, for example, for example, “The Progeny”, which made due in pieces. The larger part of his plays portrayed the undercurrent of early passivity and the counterbalance of Socratic rationale being the cornerstone for the long convention of Greek disaster.

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