In the play Antigen, Croon becomes too strict, forbidding the burial of Polonaises who had once attacked Thebes and is considered a traitor. So when the Sentry hesitantly reports to Croon the discovery of Policies’ partially buried body, Croon is enraged. Despite Screen’s self-portrayal of a hero, the paranoid king falls short as a result of his arrogance. Croon, by forbidding the burial of Policies, defies the Gods, disregarding the expectation that all souls be buried properly.
To him though, this is an act for the better of the city that, as he ascribes, guarantees absolute rejection to “dealings with an enemy of the people” (Sophocles 495). Screen’s righteous beliefs are further revealed when he expresses his belief of money being “so demoralizing,” as it destroys “Cities… Homes, men honest hearts”. The fact that Croon is disgusted by riches and their consequences exemplifies his desire for economic equality, a heroic desire, whereas many rulers are corrupted holding the kind of power which Croon bears.
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In contrast, the fact that Croon mentions this hatred for the “demoralizing money’ indicates his Armenia because he suspects this to occur in any given moment during his reign in Thebes (499). When confronted by the Sentry, Croon threatens him saying “Fortune won is often misfortune,” referring to the eventual “misfortune” of the Sentry if Croon finds out that he took a bribe or “fortune” to bury Policies or to protect the one who did. Croon also reveals his paranoia, neither as he makes no exceptions as to whom the law applies nor as to how criminals are punished, even to the Sentry who is loyal to him.
The king initially suspects the Sentry of being involved in the burial of Policies. (499). It is understandable that Croon has good intentions for the city of Thebes however, he is misguided by his paranoia and fails to properly deal with situations. Croon is the type of ruler who sets the city of Thebes as a priority, even over the will of the Gods. When Croon is first introduced to the news about the burial of the dead body of Policies, Chorals suggests that perhaps this occurrence was completed through the gods.
Croon in response questions Chorals’ reason saying, “Is it your senile opinion that the gods love to honor bad men? ” clearly indicating the kings lack of reverence for the tremendous power and will of the Gods, to have even the worst of men properly buried to ensure transition into the afterlife (498). Screen’s actions revolve around the mortal law and the wellbeing of mortal beings in his city and not the “immortal unrecorded laws of God” as Antigen describes which requires the burial of the body to attain peace (502).
Croon does not recognize the significance recognizes and priorities the importance of keeping Thebes safe. Indeed Croon does have a very peculiar personality full of complexities that which dramatically affects the way events play out during his reign. Croon sees himself as a hero who only wishes for the best for the people of his city but fails to respect the Gods and is too strict and paranoid. As he discovers in the eventual future, a true king does not go to such extremes to keep his city safe.