Laius had left the city never to return; of his train but one man escaped to announce his death by assassins.
For he it was who said that Laius, the king who is dead, should be slain by the hand of his own son.
Accordingly Laius gave his son, who was only a baby, to a certain herdsman, with instructions to put him to death.
It answered that the land must be purified from the blood of Laius.
But Laius was too gentle to harm a babe, and so ordered a servant to carry the child out of the town and put him to death.
So he reigned in the room of Laius, and espoused the widowed queen.
The onslaught from without has been repulsed, but the male line of the house of Laius is extinct.
Thus the crime of Laius is want of self-restraint in the first instance, contempt of God in the second, and cruelty in the third.
From the queen thy mother I had thee, and thy father was—Laius the king.
It should be noticed that Antigone, in whom the fate of the family of Laius is finally accomplished, falls an innocent victim.