I am going to discuss how Oedipus the King, also known as Oedipus Tyrranus and Oedipus rex, one of the three Theban plays by Sophocles, premiered in 5th century BCE in the Theatre of Dionysus, located in Athens in Greece, is a perfect template for tragedies, as it consists of all the elements that the great Greek philosopher Aristotle thought a perfect tragedy must have, as mentioned in his work- Poetics.
First of all, I'd like to throw some light on what Aristotle defined a tragedy as. In his words,
Tragedy is an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the form of action, not of narrative; with incidents arousing pity and fear, wherewith to accomplish its catharsis of such emotions. . .
Now, I need to make it clear to you that the word 'imitation' used in the definition doesn't mean a mere pale copy of life. It has been purged of its negative connotation now and has developed into a literary term. It refers to copying realistic situations from the real world whose reoccurrence is likely, probably or at least possible. It'd not be just factual but philosophical and universally applicable. It is to be noted that it's not the characters that are to be imitated, but the actions of those characters. For example, Oedipus the King is not a story just about a random king and his attributes, but it is about the actions of a king, which here is Oedipus, that led to a tragic end. This imitation is possible by using spectacle, diction and melody. A good tragedy, according to Aristotle, should be however focused on imitating reality mainly by diction and melody.
The word 'serious' here refers to not something grave or solemn, but means something important and weighty enough to be worth copying.
'Complete' here refers to the wholeness and unity of the plot of the tragedy. There should be a coherence that holds...