Ismene also sees his soft side with Creon being soft-spoken and calm with her.
Antigone is by no means a saint, because she was clearly involved in the incestuous relationship with her brother, but from the other side she is the one who is faithful to the traditions and has mercy over anyone.
The second criterion is passed by both Antigone and Creon.
They can’t be called overly good characters or villains. His refusal to bury Polyneices meant much more for the ancient Greeks who considered a proper funeral a must, even for the enemies.
Let’s talk about the main traits that define a tragic hero: high social status and high responsibility for one’s actions, moral ambiguity without black and white portrayal, determination, compassion from the audience and a trait that causes all the tragedy of their story.
The social status of Antigone is almost one of a princess.He can be also very harsh to his own sentry, still being a good king.In the meantime, he behaves very noble and courteous towards Antigone, clearly showing her his respect and affection.Moreover, he doesn’t want to kill her after rethinking the situation.Still Antigone has more compassion even from the modern audience.The common people don’t see the responsibility that burdens him and don’t know that there is no pleasure for him in killing the wife of his son. His initial mistake – giving up to his rage and forbidding to bury Polyneices – turns into a much more serious issue that he can’t resolve without losing his reputation in one or another way.He can’t spare Antigone on the spot, because she openly disobeyed him.If Antigone yielded to her King, she would be pardoned.But she fiercely decided to take her own life, just not to give him the pleasure, not knowing that King Creon changed his mind and was riding to spare her life and bury Polyneices instead.She insists that human judgement can only take the body of a person, but their soul should have peace in the afterlife, so she demands the burial for Polyneices.One of the most important traits for a tragic hero is a fatal flaw that destroys their life.