fbpx
Wikipedia

Socrates

This article is about the classical Greek philosopher. For other uses of Socrates, see Socrates (disambiguation). For the Attic orator, see Isocrates.

Socrates (; Greek:Σωκράτης, translit. Sōkrátēs ; c. 470–399 BC) was a Greek philosopher from Athens who is credited as a founder of Western philosophy and the first moral philosopher of the ethical tradition of thought. An enigmatic figure, Socrates authored no texts and is known mainly through the posthumous accounts of classical writers, particularly his students Plato and Xenophon. These accounts are written as dialogues, in which Socrates and his interlocutors examine a subject in the style of question and answer; they gave rise to the Socratic dialogue literary genre. Contradictory accounts of Socrates make a reconstruction of the history of his life nearly impossible, a situation known as the Socratic problem. Socrates was a polarizing figure in Athenian society. In 399 BC, he was accused of corrupting the youth and failing to acknowledge the city's official gods. After a trial that lasted a day, he was sentenced to death. He spent his last day in prison, refusing to escape.

Socrates
A marble head of Socrates in the Louvre (copy of bronze head by Lysippus)
Bornc. 470 BC
Died399 BC (aged approximately 71)
Athens
Cause of deathExecution by forced suicide by poisoning
Spouse(s)Xanthippe
ChildrenLamprocles, Menexenus, Sophroniscus
FamilySophroniscus(father), Phaenarete(mother), Patrocles(half-brother)
EraAncient Greek philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
SchoolClassical Greek philosophy
Notable students
Main interests
Epistemology, ethics, teleology
Notable ideas
Influenced

Plato's dialogues are among the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive from antiquity, from which Socrates has become renowned for his contributions to the fields of rationalism and ethics. This Platonic Socrates lends his name to the concept of the Socratic method, and also to Socratic irony. The Socratic method of questioning, or elenchus, takes shape in dialogue using short questions and answers, epitomized by those Platonic texts in which Socrates and his interlocutors examine various aspects of an issue or an abstract meaning, usually relating to one of the virtues, and find themselves completely unable to define what they thought they understood. Socrates is known for proclaiming his total ignorance; he used to say that the only thing he was aware of was his ignorance, seeking to imply that the realization of our ignorance is the first step in philosophizing.

Socrates exerted a strong influence on philosophers in later antiquity and has continued to do so in the modern era. Almost all major philosophical currents in the classical era saw themselves as continuing the work of Socrates. Socrates was studied by medieval and Islamic scholars and played an important role in the thought of the Italian Renaissance, particularly within the humanist movement. Interest in Socrates continued unabated, as reflected in the works of Søren Kierkegaard and Friedrich Nietzsche. Depictions of Socrates in art, literature and popular culture have made him a widely known figure in the Western philosophical tradition.

Contents

Statue of Socrates in front of the modern-day Academy of Athens

Socrates did not document his teachings. All we know of him comes from the accounts of others: mainly the philosopher Plato and the historian Xenophon, who were both his pupils; the Athenian comic dramatist Aristophanes (Socrates's contemporary); and Plato's pupil Aristotle, who was born after Socrates's death. The often contradictory stories from these ancient accounts only serve to complicate scholars' ability to reconstruct Socrates's true thoughts reliably, a predicament known as the Socratic problem. The works of Plato, Xenophon, and other authors who use the character of Socrates as an investigative tool, are written in the form of a dialogue between Socrates and his interlocutors and provide the main source of information on Socrates's life and thought. Socratic dialogues (logos sokratikos) was a term coined by Aristotle to describe this newly formed literary genre. While the exact dates of their composition are unknown, it is believed that many were written after Socrates's death. As Aristotle first noted, the extent to which the dialogues portray Socrates authentically is a matter of some debate.

Plato and Xenophon

Xenophon was a well-educated, honest man, but was far from being a trained philosopher; neither could he conceptualize or articulate Socrates's arguments. Xenophon admired Socrates for his intelligence, his patriotism, and his courage on the battlefield. Xenophon discusses Socrates in four of his works: the Memorabilia, the Oeconomicus, the Symposium, and the Apology of Socrates. He also mentions a story featuring Socrates in his Anabasis. Oeconomicus recounts a discussion on practical agricultural issues. Like Plato's Apology, Xenophon's Apologia describes the trial of Socrates, but the works diverge substantially and, according to W. K. C. Guthrie, Xenophon's account portrays a Socrates of "intolerable smugness and complacency". Symposium is a dialogue of Socrates with other prominent Athenians during an after-dinner discussion, but is quite different from Plato's Symposium: there is no overlap in the guest list, In Memorabilia, he defends Socrates from the accusations of corrupting the youth and being against the gods; essentially, it is a collection of various stories gathered together to construct a new apology for Socrates.

Plato's representation of Socrates is not straightforward. Plato was a pupil of Socrates and outlived him by five decades. How trustworthy Plato is in representing the attributes of Socrates is a matter of debate; the view that he did not represent views other than Socrates's own is not shared by many contemporary scholars. A driver of this doubt is the inconsistency of the character of Socrates that he presents. One common explanation of this inconsistency is that Plato initially tried to accurately represent the historical Socrates, while later in his writings he was happy to insert his own views into Socrates's words. Under this understanding, there is a distinction between the Socratic Socrates of Plato's earlier works and the Platonic Socrates of Plato's later writings, although the boundary between the two seems blurred.

Xenophon's and Plato's accounts differ in their presentations of Socrates as a person. Xenophon's Socrates is duller, less humorous and less ironic than Plato's. Xenophon's Socrates also lacks the philosophical features of Plato's Socrates—ignorance, the socratic method or elenchus—and thinks enkrateia(self-control) is of pivotal importance, which is not the case with Plato's Socrates. Generally, logoi Sokratikoi cannot help us to reconstruct the historical Socrates even in cases where their narratives overlap due to possible influences authors had among them.

Aristophanes and other sources

Writers of Athenian comedy, including Aristophanes, also commented on Socrates. Aristophanes's most important comedy with respect to Socrates is The Clouds, in which Socrates is a central character. In this drama, Aristophanes presents a caricature of Socrates that leans towards sophism, ridiculing Socrates as an absurd atheist. Socrates in Clouds is interested in natural philosophy, which agrees with Plato's depiction of him in Phaedo. What is certain is that by the age of 45, Socrates had already captured the interest of Athenians as a philosopher. It is doubtful though, whether Aristophanes work is useful in reconstructing the historical Socrates.

Other ancient authors who wrote about Socrates were Aeschines of Sphettus, Antisthenes, Aristippus, Bryson, Cebes, Crito, Euclid of Megara, Phaedo and Aristotle, all of whom wrote after Socrates's death. Aristotle was not a contemporary of Socrates; he studied under Plato at the latter's Academy for twenty years. Aristotle treats Socrates without the bias of Xenophon and Plato, who had an emotional tie with Socrates, and he scrutinizes Socrates's doctrines as a philosopher. Aristotle was familiar with the various written and unwritten stories of Socrates.

The Socratic problem

In a seminal work titled "The Worth of Socrates as a Philosopher" (1818), the philosopher Friedrich Schleiermacher attacked Xenophon's accounts; his attack was widely accepted and gave rise to the Socratic problem. Schleiermacher criticized Xenophon for his naïve representation of Socrates. Xenophon was a soldier, argued Schleiermacher, and was therefore not well placed to articulate Socratic ideas. Furthermore, Xenophon was biased in his depiction of his former friend and teacher: he believed Socrates was treated unfairly by Athens, and sought to prove his point of view rather than to provide an impartial account. The result, said Schleiermacher, was that Xenophon portrayed Socrates as an uninspiring philosopher. By the early 20th century, Xenophon's account was largely rejected.

The philosopher Karl Joel, basing his arguments on Aristotle's interpretation of logos sokratikos, suggested that the Socratic dialogues are mostly fictional: according to Joel, the dialogues' authors were just mimicking some Socratic traits of dialogue. In mid-20th century, philosophers such as Olof Gigon and Eugène Dupréel, based on Joel's though, proposed that the study of Socrates should focus on the various versions of his character and beliefs rather than aiming to reconstruct a historical Socrates. Later, ancient philosophy scholar Gregory Vlastos suggested that the early Socratic dialogues of Plato were more compatible with other evidence for a historical Socrates than his later writings, an argument that is based on inconsistencies in Plato's own evolving depiction of Socrates. Vlastos totally disregarded Xenophon's account except when it agreed with Plato's. More recently, Charles H. Kahn has reinforced the skeptical stance on the unsolvable Socratic problem, suggesting that only Plato's Apology has any historical significance.

Battle of Potidaea (432 BC): Athenians against Corinthians (detail). Scene of Socrates (center) saving Alcibiades. 18th century engraving. According to Plato, Socrates participated in the Battle of Potidaea, the retreat of Battle of Delium and the battle of Amphipolis (422 BC)

Socrates was born in 470 or 469 BC to Sophroniscus and Phaenarete, a stoneworker and a midwife, respectively, in the Athenian deme of Alopece; therefore, he was an Athenian citizen, having been born to relatively affluent Athenians. He lived close to his father's relatives and inherited, as was customary, part of his father's estate, securing a life reasonably free of financial concerns. His education followed the laws and customs of Athens. He learned the basic skills of reading and writing and, like most wealthy Athenians, received extra lessons in various other fields such as gymnastics, poetry and music. He was married twice (which came first is not clear): his marriage to Xanthippe took place when Socrates was in his fifties, and another marriage was with a daughter of Aristides, an Athenian statesman. He had three sons with Xanthippe. Socrates fulfilled his military service during the Peloponnesian War and distinguished himself in three campaigns, according to Plato.

Another incident that reflects Socrates's for the law is the arrest of Leon the Salaminian. As Plato describes in his Apology, Socrates and four others were summoned to the Tholos and told by representatives of the Thirty Tyrants (which began ruling in 404 BCE) to arrest Leon for execution. Again Socrates was the sole abstainer, choosing to risk the tyrants' wrath and retribution rather than to participate in what he considered to be a crime.

Head of Socrates in Palazzo Massimo alle Terme (Rome)

Socrates attracted great interest from the Athenian public and especially the Athenian youth. He was notoriously ugly, having a flat turned-up nose, bulging eyes and a large belly; his friends joked about his appearance. Socrates was indifferent to material pleasures, including his own appearance and personal comfort. He neglected personal hygiene, bathed rarely, walked barefoot, and owned only one ragged coat. He moderated his eating, drinking, and sex, although he did not practice full abstention. While he was physically attracted to both sexes, as was common and accepted in ancient Greece, he resisted his passion for young men because, as Plato describes, he was more interested in educating their souls. Socrates did not seek sex from his disciples, as was often the case between older and younger men in Athens. Politically, he did not take sides in the rivalry between the democrats and the oligarchs in Athens; he criticized both. The character of Socrates as exhibited in Apology, Crito, Phaedo and Symposium concurs with other sources to an extent that gives confidence in Plato's depiction of Socrates in these works as being representative of the real Socrates.

Socrates died in Athens in 399 BC after a trial for impiety and the corruption of the young that lasted for only a day. He spent his last day in prison among friends and followers who offered him a route to escape, which he refused. He died the next morning, in accordance with his sentence, after drinking poison hemlock. He had never left Athens, except during the military campaigns which he had participated in.

Main article: Trial of Socrates

In 399 BC, Socrates went on trial for corrupting the minds of the youth of Athens, and for impiety. Socrates defended himself unsuccessfully. He was found guilty by a majority vote cast by a jury of hundreds of male Athenian citizens and, according to the custom, proposed his own penalty: that he should be given free food and housing by the state, for the services he rendered to the city. In the alternative, he proposed that he be fined one mina of silver (according to him, all he had). The jurors declined his offer and ordered the death penalty. The official charges were: (1) corrupting youth; (2) worshipping false gods; and (3) not worshipping the state religion.

Socrates was charged in a politically tense climate. In 404 BC, the Athenians had been crushed by Spartans at the decisive naval Battle of Aegospotami, and subsequently, the Spartans laid siege to Athens. They replaced the democratic government with a new, pro-oligarchic government, named the Thirty Tyrants. Because of their tyrannical measures, some Athenians organized to overthrow the Tyrants—and, indeed, they managed to do so briefly—until a Spartan request for aid from the Thirty arrived and a compromise was sought. When the Spartans left again, however, democrats seized the opportunity to kill the oligarchs and reclaim the government of Athens.

The accusations against Socrates were initiated by a poet, Meletus, who asked for the death penalty in accordance with the charge of asebeia. Other accusers were Anytus and Lycon. After a month or two, in late spring or early summer, the trial started and likely went on for most of one day. The religious charges certainly had substance to them; Socrates had criticized the anthropomorphism of traditional Greek religion, and moreover he was seemingly believing in a daimonion- an inner voice linked to a deity.

Plato's Apology starts with Socrates answering the various rumours against him that have given rise to the indictment. First, Socrates defends himself against the rumour that he is an atheist naturalist philosopher, as portrayed in Aristophanes's The Clouds; or a sophist. Against the allegations of corrupting the youth, Socrates answers that he has never corrupted anyone intentionally, since corrupting someone would carry the risk of being corrupted back in return, and that would be illogical, since corruption is undesirable. On the second charge, Socrates asks for clarification. Meletus responds by repeating the accusation that Socrates is an atheist. Socrates notes the contradiction between atheism and worshipping false gods. He then claims that he is "God's gift" to the Athenians, since his activities ultimately benefit Athens; thus, in condemning him to death, Athens itself will be the greatest loser. After that, he says that even though no human can reach wisdom, seeking it is the best thing someone can do, implying money and prestige are not as precious as commonly thought.

The Death of Socrates, by Jacques-Louis David (1787). Socrates was visited by friends in his last night at prison. His discussion with them gave rise to Plato's Crito and Phaedo.

Socrates was given the chance to offer alternative punishments for himself after being found guilty. He could have requested permission to flee Athens and live in exile, but he did not do so. Instead, according to Plato, he requested that a fine should be imposed on him, even suggesting that free meals should be provided for him daily in recognition of his worth to Athens, although Xenophon wrote that he made no proposals. The jurors favoured the death penalty. In return, Socrates warned jurors and Athenians that criticism of them by his many disciples was inescapable, unless they became good men. After a delay caused by Athenian religious ceremonies, Socrates spent his last day in prison, his friends visiting him and offering him an opportunity to escape, which he declined.

The question of what motivated Athenians to convict Socrates remains a point of controversy among scholars. There are two theories. The first is that Socrates was convicted on religious grounds; the second, that he was accused and convicted for political reasons. Another, more recent, interpretation synthesizes the religious and political theories, arguing that religion and state were not separate in ancient Athens.

The argument for religious persecution is supported by the fact that the accounts of the trial by both Plato and Xenophon mostly focus on the charges of impiety. In those accounts, Socrates is portrayed as making no effort to dispute the fact that he did not believe in the Athenian gods. Against this arguments, stands the fact that there were many skeptics and atheist philosophers during this time who managed to evade prosecution. According to argument for political persecution, Socrates was targeted because he was perceived by his countrymen as a threat to democracy. It was true that Socrates did not stand for democracy during the reign of Thirty, and that most of his pupils were against the democrats. The case for it being a political persecution is usually challenged by the existence of an amnesty that was granted to Athenian citizens in 403 BC to prevent escalation to civil war after the fall of oligarchs (the Thirty Tyrants); but, as the text from Socrates's trial and other texts reveal, the accusers could have fuelled their rhetoric using events prior to 403 BC.

Socratic method

Main article: Socratic method
The Debate of Socrates and Aspasia by Nicolas-André Monsiau. Socrates's discussions were not limited to a small elite group; he engaged in dialogues with foreigners and with people from all social classes and of all genders.

A fundamental characteristic of Plato's Socrates is the Socratic method, or the method of refutation (elenchus). It is most prominent in the early works of Plato, such as Apology, Crito, Gorgias, Republic I, and others. The typical elenchus proceeds as follows. Socrates initiates a discussion about a topic with a known expert on the subject, usually in the company of some young men and boys, and by dialogue proves the expert's beliefs and arguments to be contradictory. Socrates initiates the dialogue by asking his interlocutor for a definition of the subject. As he asks more questions, the interlocutor's answers eventually contradict the first definition. The conclusion is that the expert did not really know the definition in the first place. The interlocutor may come up with a different definition. That new definition, in turn, comes under the scrutiny of Socratic questioning. With each round of question and answer, Socrates and his interlocutor hope to approach the truth. More often, they continue to reveal their ignorance. Since the interlocutors' definitions most commonly represent the mainstream opinion on a matter, the discussion places doubt on the common opinion.

Socrates also tests his own opinions through the Socratic method. Thus Socrates does not teach a fixed philosophical doctrine. Rather, he acknowledges his own ignorance while searching for truth with his pupils and interlocutors.

Scholars have questioned the validity and the exact nature of the Socratic method, or indeed if there even was a Socratic method. In 1982, the scholar of ancient philosophy Gregory Vlastos claimed that the Socratic method could not be used to establish the truth or falsehood of a proposition. Rather, Vlastos argued, it was a way to show that an interlocutor's beliefs were inconsistent. There have been two main lines of thought regarding this view, depending on whether it is accepted that Socrates is seeking to prove a claim wrong. According to the first line of thought, known as the constructivist approach, Socrates indeed seeks to refute a claim by this method, and the method helps in reaching affirmative statements. The non-constructivist approach holds that Socrates merely wants to establish the inconsistency between the premises and conclusion of the initial argument.

Socratic priority of definition

Socrates starts his discussions with a search for definitions. In most cases, Socrates initiates his discourse with an expert on a subject by seeking a definition—by asking, for example, what virtue, goodness, justice, or courage is—before discussing the subject further. Some scholars have argued that Socrates does not endorse this as a principle, because they can locate examples of him not doing so (e.g., in Laches, when searching for examples of courage in order to define it). Some have argued that this priority of definition comes from Plato rather than Socrates. Philosopher Peter Geach, accepting that Socrates endorses the priority of definition, finds the technique fallacious, and criticizes it as follows: "We know heaps of things without being able to define the terms in which we express our knowledge". The debate on the issue is still unresolved.

Socratic ignorance

Ruins of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi, where Pythia was sited. The Delphic aphorism Know thyself was important to Socrates, as evident in many Socratic dialogues by Plato, especially Apology.

Plato's Socrates often claims that he is aware of his own lack of knowledge, especially when discussing ethical concepts such as arete (i.e., goodness, courage) since he does not know the nature of such concepts. For example, during his trial, with his life at stake, Socrates says: "I thought Evenus a happy man, if he really possesses this art (technē), and teaches for so moderate a fee. Certainly I would pride and preen myself if I knew (epistamai) these things, but I do not know (epistamai) them, gentlemen". In another passage, when he was informed that the Oracle of Delphi had declared that there is no one wiser than Socrates, he relates: "So I withdrew and thought to myself: 'I am wiser (sophoteron) than this man; it is likely that neither of us knows (eidenai) anything worthwhile, but he thinks he knows something when he does not, whereas when I do not know, neither do I think I know; so I am likely to be wiser than he to this small extent, that I do not think I know what I do not know".

In some of Plato's dialogues, Socrates appears to credit himself with some knowledge, and can even seem strongly opinionated for a man who professes his own ignorance. For example, in his Apology, he says "It is perhaps on this point and in this respect, gentlemen, that I differ from the majority of men, and if I were to claim that I am wiser than anyone in anything, it would be in this, that, as I have no adequate knowledge (ouk eidōs hikanōs) of things in the underworld, so I do not think I have. I do know (oida), however, that it is wicked and shameful to do wrong (adikein), to disobey one's superior, be he god or man. I shall never fear or avoid things of which I do not know, whether they may not be good rather than things that I know (oida) to be bad."

This contradiction has puzzled scholars. There are varying explanations of the inconsistency, mostly in terms of differing interpretations of the meaning of "knowledge". There is a consensus that Socrates accepts that acknowledging one's lack of knowledge is the first step towards wisdom. While Socrates claims that he has acquired cognitive achievement in some aspects of knowledge, he denies any wisdom in the most important domains in ethics.

Socratic irony

There is a widespread assumption that Socrates was an ironist, mostly based on the depiction of Socrates by Plato and Aristotle. Socrates's irony is so subtle and slightly humorous that it often leaves the reader wondering if Socrates is making an intentional pun. Plato's Euthyphro is filled with Socratic irony. The story begins when Socrates is meeting with Euthyphro, a man who has accused his own father of murder. Socrates bites Euthyphro several times (metaphorically) without his interlocutor understanding the irony. When Socrates first hears the details of the story, he comments, "It is not, I think, any random person who could do this [prosecute one's father] correctly, but surely one who is already far progressed in wisdom". When Euthyphro is boasting about his understanding of divinity, Socrates responds that it is "most important that I become your student".

Socrates is commonly seen as ironic when using praise to flatter or when addressing his interlocutors. Aristotle linked Socratic irony to a different meaning. Aristotle used the term eirōneia (a Greek word, later Latinized, from which the English word irony comes) to describe Socrates's self-deprecation. Eirōneia, then, contrary to modern meaning, meant to conceal a narrative that was not stated, while in today's "irony", the message is clear, even though untold literally.

Scholars are divided on why Socrates uses irony. The mainstream opinion, since the Hellenistic period, perceives irony as a means to add a playful note to Socrates's speech so as to get the attention of the audience. Another line of thought holds that Socrates conceals his philosophical message with irony, making it accessible only to those who can separate the parts of his statements which are ironic from those which are not. Gregory Vlastos has identified a more complex pattern of irony in Socrates, where his words have a double meaning, both ironic and not, although this opinion is not shared by many other scholars.

Not everyone was amused by Socratic irony. Epicureans, the only post-Socratic philosophers in ancient times that did not identify themselves as successors of Socrates, based their criticism of Socrates on his ironic spirit, preferring a more direct approach to teaching. Centuries later, Friedrich Nietzsche commented along the same lines: "Dialectics lets you act like a tyrant; you humiliate the people you defeat."

Socratic eudaimonism and intellectualism

For Socrates, the pursuit of eudaimonia motivates all human action, directly or indirectly. Virtue and knowledge are linked, in Socrates's view, to eudaimonia, but how closely he considered them to be connected is still debated. Some argue that Socrates thought that virtue, knowledge, and eudaimonia are identical, while another opinion holds that, for Socrates, virtue serves as a means to eudaimonia (the "identical" and "sufficiency" thesis, respectively). Another point of debate is whether, according to Socrates, it is actual good that people desire, or rather, only what they perceive as good.

In Plato's Protagoras (345c4-e6), Socrates implies that "no one errs willingly", which has become the hallmark of Socratic intellectualism. Socrates is intellectualist because he gave a prominent role to virtue and knowledge. He was also a motivational intellectualist, since he believed that human actions are guided by a cognitive power to comprehend what they desire, while diminishing the role of impulses. Priority given to the intellect as being the way to live a good life, diminishing or placing aside irrational beliefs or passions, is the hallmark of Socratic moral philosophy. Plato's dialogues that support Socrates's intellectual motivism—as this Socratic thesis is named—are mainly the Gorgias (467c–8e, where Socrates discusses the actions of a tyrant that do not benefit him) and Meno (77d–8b, where Socrates explains to Meno his view that no one wants bad things, unless they don't have knowledge of what is good and bad in the first place). Socrates's total rejection of akrasia (acting because of your irrational passions contrary to your knowledge or beliefs) has puzzled scholars. Most believe that Socrates left no space for irrational desires, although some claim that Socrates acknowledged the existence of irrational motivations, but denied they play a primary role in decision-making.

Religion

Henri Estienne's 1578 edition of Euthyphro, parallel Latin and Greek text. Estienne's translations were heavily used and reprinted for more than two centuries. Socrates's discussion with Euthyphro still remains influential in theological debates.

Socrates's religious nonconformity challenged the views of his times and his critique reshaped religious discourse for the coming centuries. In Ancient Greece, and therefore in Athens, organized religion was fragmented, celebrated in a number of festivals for specific gods, such as the City Dionysia, or in domestic rituals, and there were no sacred texts. Religion, therefore, intermingled with the daily life of citizens, who performed their personal religious duties mainly with sacrifices to various gods. Whether Socrates was a practicing man of religion or a 'provocateur atheist' has been a point of debate since ancient times; his trial included impiety accusations, and the controversy hasn't yet ceased.

Socrates discusses divinity and the soul mostly in Alcibiades, Euthyphro, and Apology. In Alcibiades Socrates links the human soul to divinity, concluding "Then this part of her resembles God, and whoever looks at this, and comes to know all that is divine, will gain thereby the best knowledge of himself." His discussions on religion always fall under the scope of his rationalism, Socrates, in Euthyphro, discusses piety where he reaches a revolutionary conclusion which takes him far from the age's usual practice: he deems sacrifices to the gods to be useless, especially when they are driven by the hope of receiving a reward in return. Instead he calls for philosophy and the pursuit of knowledge to be the principal way towards worshipping the gods. The rejection of traditional forms of piety placed a moral burden on ordinary Athenians, who were also his jurors at his trial.

Socrates argued that the gods were inherently wise and just, a perception far from traditional religion at that time. In Euthyphro, the Euthyphro dilemma arises: Socrates questions his interlocutor about the relationship between piety and the will of a powerful god: Is something good because it is the will of this god, or is it the will of this god because it is good? In other words, does piety follow the good, or the god? The implications of this puzzle lead to the rejection of the traditional Greek theology, since the Homeric gods fought against each other. Socrates thought that goodness, in essence, is independent from gods, and gods must themselves be pious.

Socrates affirms a belief in gods in Plato's Apology, where he says to the jurors that he acknowledges gods more than his accusers. For Plato's Socrates, the existence of gods is taken for granted; in none of his dialogues does he probe whether gods exist or not. In Apology, a case for Socrates being agnostic can be made, based on his discussion of the great unknown after death, and in Phaedo (the dialogue with his students in his last day) Socrates gives expression to a clear belief in the immortality of the soul. He also believed in oracles, divinations and other messages from gods. These signs did not offer him any positive belief on moral issues; rather, they were predictions of future events that couldn't be assessed through reason.

In Xenophon's Memorabilia, Socrates constructs an argument that resonates with a belief in intelligent design. He claims that since there are a lot of features in the universe that exhibit "signs of forethought" (e.g., eyelids), a divine creator must have created the universe. He then deduces that the creator should be omniscient and omnipotent and also, that he created the universe for the advance of humankind, since humans naturally have many abilities that other animals do not. At times, Socrates speaks of a single deity, while at other times he refers to plural "gods". This has been interpreted as meaning that he either believed that a supreme deity was in command of other gods, or that various gods were parts, or manifestations, of this single deity.

It has been a source of puzzlement how Socratic religious beliefs can be consistent with his strict adherence to rationalism. Philosophy professor Mark McPherran suggests that Socrates inspected and interpreted every divine sign through secular rationality for confirmation. Professor of ancient philosophy A. A. Long suggests that it would be anachronistic to suppose that Socrates believed the religious and rational realms were separate.

Socratic daimonion

Alcibiades Receiving Instruction from Socrates, a 1776 painting by François-André Vincent, depicting Socrates's daimon.

In several texts (e.g., Plato's Euthyphro 3b5; Apology 31c–d; Xenophon's Memorabilia 1.1.2) Socrates claims he hears a daimōnic sign—an inner voice heard usually when he was about to make a mistake. Socrates claims at his trial that this is what prevented him from entering into politics, explaining further that: "The reason for this is something you have heard me frequently mention in different places—namely, the fact that I experience something divine and daimonic, as Meletus has inscribed in his indictment, by way of mockery. It started in my childhood, the occurrence of a particular voice. Whenever it occurs, it always deters me from the course of action I was intending to engage in, but it never gives me positive advice. It is this that has opposed my practicing politics, and I think its doing so has been absolutely fine." Modern scholarship has variously interpreted this Socratic daimōnion as a rational source of knowledge, an impulse, a dream or even a paranormal experience felt by an ascetic Socrates.

Virtue and knowledge

Socrates is known for disavowing knowledge, a claim encapsulated in the saying "I know that I know nothing". This is often attributed to Socrates on the basis of a statement in Plato's Apology, though the same view is repeatedly found elsewhere in Plato's early writings on Socrates. In other statements though, he implies or even claims that he does have knowledge. For example, in Plato's Apology Socrates says: "...but that to do injustice and disobey my superior, god or man, this I know to be evil and base...".(Ap. 29B6-7) In his debate with Callicles, he says: "...I know well that if you will agree with me on those things which my soul believes, those things will be the very truth..."

Whether Socrates genuinely thought he lacked knowledge or merely feigned a belief in his own ignorance remains a matter of debate. A common interpretation is that he was indeed feigning modesty. According to Norman Gulley, Socrates did this to entice his interlocutors to speak with him. On the other hand, Terence Irwin claims that Socrates's words should be taken literally. Vlastos argues that there is enough evidence to refute both claims. On his view, for Socrates, there are two separate meanings of "knowledge": Knowledge-C and Knowledge-E (C stands for "certain", and E stands for elenchus, i.e. the Socratic method). Knowledge-C is the something unquestionable whereas Knowledge-E is the result of Socrates's elenchus, his way of examining things. Thus, Socrates speaks the truth when he says he knows-C something, and he is also truthful when saying he knows-E, for example that it is evil for someone to disobey his superiors, as he claims in Apology. Not everyone has been impressed by this semantic dualism. Lesher argued that Socrates claimed in various dialogues that one word is linked to one meaning (i.e. in Hippias major, Meno, Laches). Lesher suggests that although Socrates claimed that he had no knowledge regarding the nature of virtues, he thought that in some cases, someone could have knowledge on some ethical propositions.

Socrates's theory of virtue states that all virtues are essentially one, since they are a form of knowledge. In Protagoras, Socrates makes the case for the unity of virtues using the example of courage: if someone has knowledge of the danger, he can undertake risks. Aristotle comments: "...Socrates the elder thought that the end of life was knowledge of virtue, and he used to seek for the definition of justice, courage, and each of the parts of virtue, and this was a reasonable approach, since he thought that all virtues were sciences, and that as soon as one knew [for example] justice, he would be just..."

Love

Socrates and Alcibiades, by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg

Some texts suggest that Socrates had love affairs with Alcibiades and other young males; others suggest that Socrates's friendship with young boys sought only to improve them and were not sexual. In Gorgias, Socrates claims he was a dual lover of Alcibiades and philosophy, and his flirtatiousness is evident in Protagoras, Meno (76a–c) and Phaedrus (227c–d). However, the exact nature of his relationship with Alcibiades is not clear since Socrates was known for his self-restraint, while Alcibiades admits in the Symposium that he had tried to seduce Socrates but failed.

The Socratic theory of love is mostly deduced from Lysis, where Socrates engages in a discussion about love at a wrestling school in the company of Lysis and his friends. They start their dialogue by investigating parental love and how it manifests with respect to the freedom and boundaries which parents set for their child. Socrates concludes that if Lysis is utterly useless, nobody will love him, not even his parents. While most scholars consider this text to be humorous in intention, it has also been suggested that it reveals the Socratic doctrine on love, which is an egoistic one, according to which we only love people who are useful to us in some way. Other scholars disagree with this view, arguing that Socrates's doctrine leaves room for non-egoistic love for a spouse; still others deny that Socrates suggests any egoistic motivation at all. A form of utility that children have for parents, as Socrates claims in Symposium, is that they offer the false impression of immortality. Scholars note that for Socrates, love is rational.

Socratic philosophy of politics

Socrates viewed himself as a political artist. In Plato's Gorgias, he tells Callicles: "I believe that I'm one of a few Athenians—so as not to say I'm the only one, but the only one among our contemporaries—to take up the true political craft and practice the true politics. This is because the speeches I make on each occasion do not aim at gratification but at what's best." His claim illustrates his aversion for the established democratic assemblies and procedures such as voting—as Socrates did not hold any respect for politicians and rhetoricians who would stoop to using tricks to mislead the public. He never ran for office or suggested any legislation. Rather, he aimed to help the city flourish by "improving" its citizens. As a citizen, he abided by the law. He obeyed the rules and carried out his military duty by fighting wars abroad. His dialogues, however, make little mention of contemporary political decisions, such as the Sicilian Expedition.

Socrates spent his time conversing with citizens, among them powerful members of Athenian society, scrutinizing their beliefs and bringing the contradictions of their ideas to light. Socrates believed he was doing them a favor since, for him, politics was about shaping the moral landscape of the city through philosophy rather than electoral procedures. There is a debate over where Socrates stood in among the polarized political climate among ancient Athens's oligarchs and democrats. While there is no clear textual evidence, one widely held theory holds that Socrates leaned towards democracy: he disobeyed the one order that the oligarchic government of the Thirty Tyrants handed to him, he respected laws and the political system of Athens (which was formulated by democrats), and lastly, it is argued that his affinity for the ideals of democratic Athens was a reason why he did not want to escape prison and the death penalty. On the other hand, there is some evidence that Socrates leaned towards oligarchy: most of his friends supported oligarchy, he was contemptuous of the opinion of the many and was critical of the democratic process, and his conversation in Protagoras, from the pen of Plato, displays some anti-democratic elements. A less mainstream argument suggests that Socrates was for democratic republicanism, placing Athens above the people and occupying in the middle ground of democrats and oligarchs.

Yet another suggestion is that Socrates was in line with liberalism, a political ideology formed in the Age of Enlightenment. This argument is mostly based on Crito and Apology, where Socrates talks about the mutually beneficial relationship between the city and its citizens. Also, Socrates has been seen as the first proponent of civil disobedience. Socrates's strong objection to injustice, along with his refusal to serve the Thirty Tyrant's order to arrest Leon, are suggestive of this line: as he says in Critias, "One ought never act unjustly, even to repay a wrong that has been done to oneself." Ιn the broader picture, Socrates's counsel would be for citizens to follow the orders of the state, unless, after much reflection, they deem them to be unjust.

Hellenistic era

Carnelian gem imprint representing Socrates, Rome, 1st century BC–1st century AD.

Socrates's impact was immense in philosophy after his death. Almost all philosophical currents after Socrates traced their roots to him: Plato's Academy, Aristotle's Lyceum, the Cynics, and the Stoics. Interest in Socrates kept increasing until the third century AD. He was considered to be the man who moved philosophy from a study of the natural world, as was the case for pre-Socratic philosophers, to a study of humanity. The Socratic priority of eudaimonia was accepted among all his successors: happiness, restrained from excesses that ultimately end in misery. They differed in response to fundamental questions such as the purpose of life or the nature of arete (goodness), since Socrates had not handed them an answer, and therefore, philosophical schools subsequently diverged greatly in their interpretation of his thought.

Immediate followers of Socratism were his pupils, Euclid, Aristippus and Antisthenes, who drew differing conclusions among themselves and followed independent trajectories. Antisthenes had a profound contempt of material goods since virtue was all that mattered, a line of thought that was continued by Diogenes and the Cynics. On the opposite end, Aristippus endorsed the accumulation of wealth, and lived a luxurious life; after leaving Athens and returning to his home city of Cyrene, he founded the Cyrenaic philosophical school which was based on hedonism, living an easy life with physical pleasures. His school passed to his grandson, bearing the same name. There is a dialogue in Xenophon's work where Aristippus claims he wants to live without wishing to rule or be ruled by others. In addition, Aristippus maintained a skeptical stance on epistemology, claiming that we can be certain only of our own feelings, resonating with the Socratic understanding of our ignorance. Euclid was a contemporary of Socrates. After Socrates's trial and death, he left Athens for the nearby town of Megara, where he founded a school, named the Megarians. His theory was built on the pre-Socratic monism of Parmenides. For Parmenides, only one thing existed and that was the "good" Socrates was searching for; Euclid continued Socrates's thought. The full doctrines of Socrates's pupils are difficult to reconstruct. It is clear however, that their impact reached Cicero.

The stoics relied heavily on Socrates. They applied the Socratic method as a tool to avoid inconsistencies. Their moral doctrines focused on how to live a smooth life through wisdom and virtue, giving a crucial role to virtue for happiness and the relation between goodness and ethical excellence, all of which echoed Socratic thought. At the same time, the philosophical current of Platonism claimed Socrates as their predecessor, in ethics and in their theory of knowledge (skepticism). Arcesilaus, the head of the Academy after Plato, continued the Socratic philosophy of ignorance, and competed with the Stoics over who was the true heir of Socrates with regard to ethics. While the Stoics insisted on knowledge-based ethics, Arcesilaus relied on Socratic ignorance. The Stoics reply to Arcesilaus was that Socratic ignorance was part of Socratic irony (they themselves disapproved the use of irony), an argument that ultimately became the dominant narrative of Socrates in later antiquity.

While Aristotle considered Socrates a major philosopher, his writing did not focus on him to the same degree as it did on other, pre-Socratic philosophers, and most of his followers did not comment on Socrates at all. One of Aristotle's pupils unleashed an ad hominem attack on Socrates: Aristoxenus authored a book full of Socrates's scandals; it was not well-received by ancient critics. The Epicureans later weaponized Socratic irony in their polemic against Socrates. They also attacked him for superstition, given his story with the Delphi oracle. Epicurus, the founder of epicureanism, living in the 4th and 3rd century BC, came across various currents claiming to be Socratic. The Epicureans criticized Socrates for his character and various faults, and focused mostly on his irony, which was deemed inappropriate for a philosopher and unseemly for a teacher. Also, his Socratic ignorance did not resonate well with their criteria of truths.

Medieval world

Depiction of Socrates by 13th century Seljuk illustrator

Socratic thought found its way to the Islamic Middle East alongside that of Aristotle and the Stoics. Plato's works on Socrates, as well as other ancient Greek literature, were translated into Arabic by prominent early Muslim scholars such as Al-Kindi, Jabir ibn Hayyan, and the Muʿtazila. For Muslim scholars, Socrates was hailed and admired for combining his ethics with his lifestyle, perhaps because of the resemblance in this regard with Muhammad's life. Socratic doctrines were altered to match Islamic faith: according to Muslim scholars, Socrates made arguments for monotheism, for a caring god in particular, and for the temporality of this world and rewards in the next life. His influence on the Arabic world continues to the present day.

In medieval times, little of Socrates's thought survived in the Christian world as a whole; however, works on Socrates from Christian scholars such as Lactantius, Eusebius and Augustine were maintained in the Byzantine Empire, where Socrates was studied under a strong Christian lens. After the fall of Constantinople, many of the texts were brought back into the world of Roman Christianity, where they were translated into Latin. Overall, ancient Socratic philosophy, like the rest of classical literature before the Renaissance, was addressed with hostility in the Christian world at first.

During the early phase of the Italian Renaissance, two different narratives of Socrates developed. On the one hand, the humanist movement revived interest in classical authors and in particular, Leonardo Bruni translated many of Plato's Socratic dialogues, while his pupil Giannozzo Manetti authored a well-circulated book, a Life of Socrates. They both presented a civic version of Socrates, with Socrates being a humanist and a supporter of republicanism. Bruni and Manetti were mostly interested in defending secularism as a non-sinful way of life, and so presenting a view of Socrates that was aligned with the Christian morality assisted their cause. But in doing so, they had to censor parts of his dialogues, especially those which appeared to promote homosexuality or any possibility of pederasty (with Alcibiades), or of representing Socratic ignorance as a tool and his daimon as a god. On the other hand, a different picture of Socrates was presented by Italian Neoplatonists led by the influential philosopher and priest Marsilio Ficino, who was impressed by the un-hierarchical and informal way of Socratic teaching, which he tried to replicate. Ficino portrayed a holy picture of Socrates, finding parallels with the life of Jesus Christ. For Ficino and his followers, Socratic ignorance signified his acknowledgement that all wisdom is God-given (through his inner voice—Socratic daimon)

Modern times

Socrates along with his wives (he was married once or twice) and students, appears in many paintings. Here Socrates, his two Wives, and Alcibiades, a painting by the Dutch Golden Age artist Reyer van Blommendael. Often, his wife Xanthippe, alone or with Myrto (the other alleged wife of Socrates) is depicted emptying a pot of urine (hydria) over Socrates

In early modern France, Socrates's image was dominated by features of his private life rather than his philosophical thought, in various novels and satirical plays. Some thinkers used Socrates to highlight and comment upon controversies of their own era, like Théophile de Viau who portrayed a Christianized Socrates accused of atheism, while for Voltaire, the figure of Socrates represented a reason-based theist. Michel de Montaigne wrote extensively on Socrates, linking him to rationalism as a counterweight to contemporary religious fanatics.

In the 18th century, German idealism revived philosophical interest in Socrates, mainly through Hegel's work. For Hegel, Socrates marked a turning point in the history of humankind by the introduction of the principle of free subjectivity or self-determination. While Hegel hails Socrates for his contribution, he nonetheless justifies the Athenian court, for Socrates's insistence upon self-determination would be destructive of the Sittlichkeit (a Hegelian term signifying the way of life as shaped by the institutions and laws of the State). Also, Hegel sees the Socratic use of rationalism as a continuation of Protagoras' subjectivism, as stated by the homo mensura principle ("Man is the measure of all things"), somewhat modified: it is our reasoning that measures all things. The Socratic method also came to influence Hegel, as it is closely related to Hegelian dialectics. Hegel did not see the Socratic method as maieutic, since it was used to refute various arguments but not to yield any positive conclusions. Also, Hegel considered Socrates as a predecessor of later ancient skeptic philosophers, even though he never clearly explained why.

Søren Kierkegaard considered Socrates his teacher, and authored his masters thesis on him, The Concept of Irony with Continual Reference to Socrates. There he argues that Socrates is not a moral philosopher but is purely an ironist. He also focused on Socrates's avoidance of writing: for Kierkegaard, this avoidance was a sign of humility deriving from a true acceptance of his ignorance. Not only did Socrates not write anything down, but his contemporaries misconstrued and misunderstood him as a philosopher, leaving us with an almost impossible task in comprehending Socratic thought. Only Plato's Apology was close to the real Socrates, according to Kierkegaard. In his writings, he revisited Socrates quite frequently; at a later stage, Kierkegaard's view on him as a pure ironist shifted, and he found ethical elements in Socratic thought. Socrates was not only a subject of study for Kierkegaard, he was a model as well, for Kierkegaard paralleled his task as a philosopher to Socrates. He writes, "The only analogy I have before me is Socrates; my task is a Socratic task, to audit the definition of what it is to be a Christian", with his aim being to bring society closer to the Christian ideal, since he believed that Christianity had become a formality, void of any Christian essence. Kierkegaard denied being a Christian, as Socrates denied possessing any knowledge, so aiming to intrigue their contemporaries.

The hostility of Friedrich Nietzsche against Socrates for reshaping the philosophical landscape of humanity is well known. Nietzsche accused Socrates of responsibility for what he saw as the deterioration of the ancient Greek civilization during the 4th century BC and after, in his first book The Birth of Tragedy (1872). For Nietzsche, Socrates turned the scope of philosophy from pre-Socratic naturalism to rationalism and intellectualism. He writes: "I conceive of [the Presocratics] as precursors to a reformation of the Greeks: but not of Socrates"; "with Empedocles and Democritus the Greeks were well on their way towards taking the correct measure of human existence, its unreason, its suffering; they never reached this goal, thanks to Socrates". The effect, Nietzsche proposed, was a perverse situation that had continued down to his day: our culture is a Socratic culture, he believed. In a later publication, The Twilight of the Idols (1887), Nietzsche continued his offensive against Socrates, focusing on the arbitrary linking of reason to virtue and happiness in Socratic thinking. He writes: "I try to understand from what partial and idiosyncratic states the Socratic problem is to be derived: his equation of reason = virtue = happiness. It was with this absurdity of a doctrine of identity that he fascinated: ancient philosophy never again freed itself [from this fascination]", From the late 19th century until the early 20th, the most common explanation of Nietzsche's hostility towards Socrates was his anti-rationalism; he considered Socrates the father of European rationalism. In the middle of the 20th century, philosopher Walter Kaufmann published an article arguing for Nietzsche's admiration of Socrates, and current mainstream opinion is that Nietzsche was ambivalent towards Socrates.

Continental philosophers Hannah Arendt, Leo Strauss and Karl Popper, after experiencing the horrors of World War II, amidst the rise of totalitarian regimes, saw Socrates as an icon of individual conscience. Arendt, in her book Eichmann in Jerusalem (1963), sees how Socrates's constant questioning and self-reflection could prevent the banality of evil. Conservative philosopher Leo Strauss considers Socrates's political thought as paralleling Plato's. He sees an elitist Socrates in Plato's Republic as exemplifying why the polis is not, and could not be, an ideal way of organizing life, since philosophical truths cannot be digested by the masses. The contrary view is held by Karl Popper, who considers Socrates as fundamentally opposing Plato's totalitarian ideas. For Popper, Socratic individualism, along with Athenian democracy, lead to the creation of their most significant contribution to humankind, the open society, which is the hallmark of Popper's philosophy, as described in his Open Society and Its Enemies (1945).

The statue of Socrates outside the National Library of Uruguay, Montevideo

Socrates in popular culture

Socrates has been widely recognized for his contribution to philosophy, but his fame is more widespread than this and he appears in many aspects of popular culture. His name has been given to philosophical institutions, programs, buildings and parks. Even a crater on the Moon bears his name. He has featured in novels, books, films, TV series, songs and compositions. Socrates inspired a generation of Romantic poets. Percy Bysshe Shelley compared Socrates to Jesus. American statesmen like Benjamin Franklin and James Madison spoke highly of Socrates, as did Martin Luther King Jr. who attributed the attainment of academic freedom to him.

  1. Jones 2006.
  2. Guthrie 1972, pp. 5–7; Dorion 2011, pp. 1–2; May 2000, p. 9; Waterfield 2013, p. 1.
  3. May 2000, p. 20; Dorion 2011, p. 7; Waterfield 2013, p. 1.
  4. Döring 2011, pp. 24–25.
  5. Dorion 2011, pp. 7–9.
  6. Guthrie 1972, pp. 13–15.
  7. Guthrie 1972, pp. 15.Cite error: The named reference "FOOTNOTEGuthrie197215" was defined multiple times with different content (see the ).Cite error: The named reference "FOOTNOTEGuthrie197215" was defined multiple times with different content (see the ).
  8. Guthrie 1972, pp. 15–16 & 28.
  9. Guthrie 1972, pp. 15–16.
  10. Guthrie 1972, p. 18.
  11. Guthrie 1972, pp. 20–23.
  12. Guthrie 1972, pp. 25–26.
  13. Guthrie 1972, pp. 29–31; Dorion 2011, p. 6.
  14. Guthrie 1972, p. 30.
  15. Guthrie 1972, pp. 29–33; Waterfield 2013, pp. 3–4.
  16. May 2000, p. 20; Dorion 2011, p. 6–7.
  17. May 2000, p. 20; Waterfield 2013, pp. 3–4.
  18. May 2000, pp. 19–20.
  19. Dorion 2011, pp. 4, 10.
  20. Waterfield 2013, pp. 10–13.
  21. Guthrie 1972, pp. 39–41.
  22. Guthrie 1972, pp. 39–51.
  23. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 5.
  24. Konstan 2011, pp. 85, 88.
  25. Waterfield 2013, pp. 7–8.
  26. Vlastos 1991, p. 52; Kahn 1998, pp. 1–2.
  27. Guthrie 1972, pp. 35–36.
  28. Guthrie 1972, p. 38.
  29. Guthrie 1972, pp. 38–39.
  30. Dorion 2011, pp. 1–3.
  31. Dorion 2011, pp. 2–3.
  32. Dorion 2011, p. 5.
  33. Dorion 2011, pp. 7–10.
  34. Dorion 2011, pp. 12–14.
  35. Dorion 2011, pp. 17–18.
  36. Guthrie 1972, p. 2.
  37. Ober 2010, pp. 159–160; Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 1; Guthrie 1972, p. 58; Dorion 2011, p. 12; Nails 2020, A chronology of the historical Socrates in the context of Athenian history and the dramatic dates of Plato's dialogues.
  38. Ober 2010, pp. 160–161.
  39. Ober 2010, pp. 161–162.
  40. Ober 2010, p. 161.
  41. Guthrie 1972, p. 65.
  42. Guthrie 1972, p. 59.
  43. Guthrie 1972, p. 65; Ober 2010, pp. 167–171.
  44. Guthrie 1972, p. 78.
  45. Guthrie 1972, pp. 66–67.
  46. Guthrie 1972, p. 69.
  47. Guthrie 1972, pp. 70–75; Nails 2020, Socrates's strangeness.
  48. Obdrzalek 2013, pp. 210–211; Nails 2020, Socrates's strangeness.
  49. Guthrie 1972, pp. 92–94; Nails 2020, Socrates's strangeness.
  50. Kahn 1998, p. 75.
  51. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 15–19.
  52. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 17, 21.
  53. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 10.
  54. May 2000, p. 30.
  55. May 2000, pp. 47–48.
  56. May 2000, p. 40.
  57. Nails 2020, A Chronology of the historical Socrates.
  58. May 2000, p. 31.
  59. May 2000, pp. 33–39.
  60. May 2000, pp. 41–42.
  61. May 2000, p. 42.
  62. May 2000, p. 43.
  63. May 2000, pp. 45–46.
  64. Guthrie 1972, pp. 65–66.
  65. Guthrie 1972, pp. 63–65; Ahbel-Rappe 2011; Ober 2010, p. 146.
  66. Guthrie 1972, pp. 64–65.
  67. Guthrie 1972, pp. 20 & 65–66; Ober 2010, p. 146.
  68. Ralkowski 2013, p. 302.
  69. Ralkowski 2013, p. 323.
  70. Ralkowski 2013, pp. 319–322.
  71. Ralkowski 2013, pp. 307–308.
  72. Ralkowski 2013, pp. 303–304.
  73. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 53.
  74. Benson 2011, p. 179; Wolfsdorf 2013, pp. 34–35.
  75. Wolfsdorf 2013, p. 34: Others include Charmides, Crito, Euthydemus, Euthyphro, Hippias Major, Hippias Minor, Ion, Laches, Lysis, Protagoras. Benson 2011, p. 179, also adds parts of Meno.
  76. Benson 2011, pp. 182–184; Wolfsdorf 2013, pp. 34–35.
  77. Benson 2011, p. 184.
  78. Guthrie 1972, pp. 125–127.
  79. Guthrie 1972, pp. 128–129.
  80. Benson 2011, p. 179,185-193.
  81. Benson 2011, p. 185; Wolfsdorf 2013, pp. 34–35; Ambury 2020, The Elenchus: Socrates the Refuter.
  82. Benson 2011, p. 185; Wolfsdorf 2013, p. 44; Ambury 2020, The Elenchus: Socrates the Refuter.
  83. Benson 2011, p. 185.
  84. Ambury 2020, The Elenchus: Socrates the Refuter: Benson (2011) names in a note scholars that are of constructivist and non-constructivism approach: "Among those "constructivists" willing to do so are Brickhouse and Smith 1994 , ch. 6.1; Burnet 1924 , pp. 136–137; McPherran 1985 ; Rabinowitz 1958 ; Reeve 1989 , ch. 1.10; Taylor 1982 ; and Vlastos 1991 , ch. 6. Those who do not think a Socratic account of piety is implied by the text ("anticonstructivists") include Allen 1970 , pp. 6–9, 67; and Grote 1865 , pp. 437–57. Beckman 1979 , ch. 2.1; Calef 1995 ; and Versényi 1982" p=118
  85. Benson 2013, p. 136.
  86. Benson 2013, pp. 136–139; Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 71.
  87. Benson 2013, pp. 143–145; Bett 2011, p. 228.
  88. Benson 2013, pp. 143–145, 147; Bett 2011, p. 229.
  89. Benson 2013, p. 145.
  90. Geach, Peter (1966). "Plato's Euthyphro: An Analysis and Commentary". The Monist. 50 (3): 371. doi:10.5840/monist196650327. ISSN 0026-9662.
  91. Benson 2013, p. 155.
  92. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 144.
  93. Guthrie 1972, p. 222; Bett 2011, p. 215; McPartland 2013, pp. 94–95.
  94. McPartland 2013, p. 98.
  95. McPartland 2013, p. 99.
  96. McPartland 2013, pp. 108–109.
  97. McPartland 2013, p. 109.
  98. McPartland 2013, p. 117.
  99. McPartland 2013, pp. 118–119.
  100. McPartland 2013, p. 135.
  101. Lane 2011, p. 239.
  102. Vasiliou 2013, p. 20.
  103. Vasiliou 2013, p. 24; Lane 2011, p. 239.
  104. Lane 2011, pp. 249–251.
  105. Lane 2011, pp. 241–242.
  106. Lane 2011, p. 243.
  107. Vasiliou 2013, pp. 28–29.
  108. Lane 2011, p. 244.
  109. Penner 2011, pp. 259–261; Brickhouse & Smith 2013, p. 185; Vlastos 1991, p. 203.
  110. Reshotko 2013, p. 159.
  111. Segvic 2006, pp. 171–173.
  112. Brickhouse & Smith 2013, p. 185.
  113. Segvic 2006, p. 171.
  114. Brickhouse & Smith 2013, pp. 185–186.
  115. Brickhouse & Smith 2013, pp. 190–191.
  116. Ausland 2019, pp. 686–687.
  117. McPherran 2011, p. 117.
  118. McPherran 2013, p. 257.
  119. McPherran 2013, pp. 259–260.
  120. McPherran 2013, pp. 257–258.
  121. Guthrie 1972, pp. 151–153.
  122. Guthrie 1972, p. 153.
  123. McPherran 2013, pp. 260–262; McPherran 2011, p. 111.
  124. McPherran 2013, p. 265.
  125. McPherran 2013, p. 266.
  126. McPherran 2013, p. 263:See also note 30 for further reference; McPherran 2011, p. 117.
  127. McPherran 2013, pp. 272–273.
  128. McPherran 2013, pp. 270–271.
  129. Guthrie 1972, pp. 157–158.
  130. Guthrie 1972, pp. 160–164.
  131. McPherran 2011, pp. 123–127.
  132. McPherran 2013, pp. 270–271; Long 2009, p. 63.
  133. McPherran 2013, p. 272; Long 2009, p. 63.
  134. McPherran 2011, p. 114.
  135. McPherran 2011, p. 124.
  136. Long 2009, p. 64.
  137. Lapatin 2009, p. 146.
  138. Long 2009, pp. 63–64.
  139. Long 2009, pp. 65–66, 70.
  140. Vlastos 1985, p. 1.
  141. Vlastos 1985, pp. 6–7.
  142. Vlastos 1985, p. 1-2; Lesher 1987, p. 275.
  143. Lesher 1987, p. 276.
  144. Lesher 1987, p. 276; Vasiliou 2013, p. 28.
  145. Lesher 1987, p. 278; McPartland 2013, p. 123.
  146. McPartland 2013, pp. 123–124.
  147. Guthrie 1972, p. 131; Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 183–184.
  148. Guthrie 1972, p. 131.
  149. Guthrie 1972, p. 131; Ahbel-Rappe & Kamtekar 2009, p. 72.
  150. Obdrzalek 2013, pp. 210–211.
  151. Obdrzalek 2013, pp. 211–212; Rudebusch 2009, p. 187.
  152. Obdrzalek 2013, pp. 214–215.
  153. Obdrzalek 2013, p. 212.
  154. Obdrzalek 2013, p. 231.
  155. Obdrzalek 2013, p. 230.
  156. Griswold 2011; Johnson 2013, p. 234.
  157. Johnson 2013, p. 234.
  158. Griswold 2011, p. 334.
  159. Johnson 2013, p. 235.
  160. Johnson 2013, pp. 236–237.
  161. Johnson 2013, p. 238.
  162. Johnson 2013, pp. 239–241.
  163. Johnson 2013, pp. 241–242.
  164. Johnson 2013, pp. 255–256.
  165. Guthrie 1972, p. 165; Long 2011, p. 355.
  166. Long 2011, pp. 355–356.
  167. Long 2011, p. 358.
  168. Guthrie 1972, pp. 165–166.
  169. Guthrie 1972, p. 169.
  170. Guthrie 1972, p. 170.
  171. Guthrie 1972, pp. 170–174.
  172. Guthrie 1972, pp. 175–177.
  173. Guthrie 1972, pp. 179–183.
  174. Long 2011, p. 362.
  175. Long 2011, pp. 362–264.
  176. Long 2011, pp. 364–365.
  177. Long 2011, p. 367.
  178. Long 2011, pp. 368–369.
  179. Long 2011, p. 374.
  180. Campos-Daroca 2019, p. 240; Lane 2011, p. 244; Long 2011, p. 370.
  181. Alon 2009, pp. 317–318.
  182. Alon 2009, pp. 325–326.
  183. Alon 2009, p. 332.
  184. Trizio 2019, pp. 609–610.
  185. Hankins 2009, pp. 237–340.
  186. Hankins 2009, pp. 348–349.
  187. Hankins 2009, pp. 341–346.
  188. Hankins 2009, pp. 346–348.
  189. Lapatin 2009, pp. 133–139.
  190. McLean 2009, pp. 353–354.
  191. McLean 2009, p. 355.
  192. Loughlin 2019, p. 665.
  193. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 12.
  194. Bowman 2019, pp. 751–753.
  195. Bowman 2019, pp. 753, 761–763.
  196. Bowman 2019, pp. 754–755.
  197. White 2009, pp. 373–374.
  198. Schur & Yamato 2019, p. 820.
  199. Schur & Yamato 2019, p. 824.
  200. Muench 2009, p. 389.
  201. Schur & Yamato 2019, pp. 824–825.
  202. Muench 2009, p. 390.
  203. Muench 2009, pp. 390–391:Quote from Kierkegaard essay My Task (1855)
  204. Muench 2009, p. 394.
  205. Raymond 2019, p. 837.
  206. Porter 2009, pp. 408–409; Ambury 2020, Legacy: How Have Other Philosophers Understood Socrates?.
  207. Porter 2009, pp. 410–411.
  208. Raymond 2019, pp. 837–839.
  209. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, p. 127.
  210. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 137–138.
  211. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 138–140.
  212. Ahbel-Rappe 2011, pp. 140–142.
  213. Nails 2020, The Socratic tradition and its reach beyond philosophy. See also Supplement "The Reception of Socrates"
Socratesat Wikipedia's sister projects

Socrates
Socrates Language Watch Edit This article is about the classical Greek philosopher For other uses of Socrates see Socrates disambiguation For the Attic orator see Isocrates Socrates ˈ s ɒ k r e t iː z 1 Greek Swkraths translit Sōkrates sɔːkratɛːs c 470 399 BC was a Greek philosopher from Athens who is credited as a founder of Western philosophy and the first moral philosopher of the ethical tradition of thought An enigmatic figure Socrates authored no texts and is known mainly through the posthumous accounts of classical writers particularly his students Plato and Xenophon These accounts are written as dialogues in which Socrates and his interlocutors examine a subject in the style of question and answer they gave rise to the Socratic dialogue literary genre Contradictory accounts of Socrates make a reconstruction of the history of his life nearly impossible a situation known as the Socratic problem Socrates was a polarizing figure in Athenian society In 399 BC he was accused of corrupting the youth and failing to acknowledge the city s official gods After a trial that lasted a day he was sentenced to death He spent his last day in prison refusing to escape SocratesA marble head of Socrates in the Louvre copy of bronze head by Lysippus Bornc 470 BC Deme Alopece AthensDied399 BC aged approximately 71 AthensCause of deathExecution by forced suicide by poisoningSpouse s XanthippeChildrenLamprocles Menexenus SophroniscusFamilySophroniscus father Phaenarete mother Patrocles half brother EraAncient Greek philosophyRegionWestern philosophySchoolClassical Greek philosophyNotable studentsPlatoXenophonAntisthenesAristippusAlcibiadesCritiasMain interestsEpistemology ethics teleologyNotable ideasSocial gadfly Socratic dialogue Socratic intellectualism Socratic irony Socratic method Socratic paradox Socratic questioning The unexamined life is not worth living Influences Prodicus Anaxagoras Archelaus Diotima DamonInfluenced Virtually all subsequent Western philosophy especially his followers e g Plato Xenophon Antisthenes Aristippus Euclid of Megara Phaedo of Elis Plato s dialogues are among the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive from antiquity from which Socrates has become renowned for his contributions to the fields of rationalism and ethics This Platonic Socrates lends his name to the concept of the Socratic method and also to Socratic irony The Socratic method of questioning or elenchus takes shape in dialogue using short questions and answers epitomized by those Platonic texts in which Socrates and his interlocutors examine various aspects of an issue or an abstract meaning usually relating to one of the virtues and find themselves completely unable to define what they thought they understood Socrates is known for proclaiming his total ignorance he used to say that the only thing he was aware of was his ignorance seeking to imply that the realization of our ignorance is the first step in philosophizing Socrates exerted a strong influence on philosophers in later antiquity and has continued to do so in the modern era Almost all major philosophical currents in the classical era saw themselves as continuing the work of Socrates Socrates was studied by medieval and Islamic scholars and played an important role in the thought of the Italian Renaissance particularly within the humanist movement Interest in Socrates continued unabated as reflected in the works of Soren Kierkegaard and Friedrich Nietzsche Depictions of Socrates in art literature and popular culture have made him a widely known figure in the Western philosophical tradition Contents 1 Sources and the Socratic problem 1 1 Plato and Xenophon 1 2 Aristophanes and other sources 1 3 The Socratic problem 2 Biography 3 Trial of Socrates 4 Philosophy 4 1 Socratic method 4 2 Socratic priority of definition 4 3 Socratic ignorance 4 4 Socratic irony 4 5 Socratic eudaimonism and intellectualism 4 6 Religion 4 7 Socratic daimonion 4 8 Virtue and knowledge 4 9 Love 4 10 Socratic philosophy of politics 5 Legacy 5 1 Hellenistic era 5 2 Medieval world 5 3 Modern times 5 4 Socrates in popular culture 6 See also 7 Notes 8 Sources 9 Further reading 10 External linksSources and the Socratic problem Statue of Socrates in front of the modern day Academy of Athens Socrates did not document his teachings All we know of him comes from the accounts of others mainly the philosopher Plato and the historian Xenophon who were both his pupils the Athenian comic dramatist Aristophanes Socrates s contemporary and Plato s pupil Aristotle who was born after Socrates s death The often contradictory stories from these ancient accounts only serve to complicate scholars ability to reconstruct Socrates s true thoughts reliably a predicament known as the Socratic problem 2 The works of Plato Xenophon and other authors who use the character of Socrates as an investigative tool are written in the form of a dialogue between Socrates and his interlocutors and provide the main source of information on Socrates s life and thought Socratic dialogues logos sokratikos was a term coined by Aristotle to describe this newly formed literary genre 3 While the exact dates of their composition are unknown it is believed that many were written after Socrates s death 4 As Aristotle first noted the extent to which the dialogues portray Socrates authentically is a matter of some debate 5 Plato and Xenophon Xenophon was a well educated honest man but was far from being a trained philosopher 6 neither could he conceptualize or articulate Socrates s arguments 7 Xenophon admired Socrates for his intelligence his patriotism and his courage on the battlefield 7 Xenophon discusses Socrates in four of his works the Memorabilia the Oeconomicus the Symposium and the Apology of Socrates He also mentions a story featuring Socrates in his Anabasis 8 Oeconomicus recounts a discussion on practical agricultural issues 9 Like Plato s Apology Xenophon s Apologia describes the trial of Socrates but the works diverge substantially and according to W K C Guthrie Xenophon s account portrays a Socrates of intolerable smugness and complacency 10 Symposium is a dialogue of Socrates with other prominent Athenians during an after dinner discussion but is quite different from Plato s Symposium there is no overlap in the guest list 11 In Memorabilia he defends Socrates from the accusations of corrupting the youth and being against the gods essentially it is a collection of various stories gathered together to construct a new apology for Socrates 12 Plato s representation of Socrates is not straightforward 13 Plato was a pupil of Socrates and outlived him by five decades 14 How trustworthy Plato is in representing the attributes of Socrates is a matter of debate the view that he did not represent views other than Socrates s own is not shared by many contemporary scholars 15 A driver of this doubt is the inconsistency of the character of Socrates that he presents 16 One common explanation of this inconsistency is that Plato initially tried to accurately represent the historical Socrates while later in his writings he was happy to insert his own views into Socrates s words Under this understanding there is a distinction between the Socratic Socrates of Plato s earlier works and the Platonic Socrates of Plato s later writings although the boundary between the two seems blurred 17 Xenophon s and Plato s accounts differ in their presentations of Socrates as a person Xenophon s Socrates is duller less humorous and less ironic than Plato s 7 18 Xenophon s Socrates also lacks the philosophical features of Plato s Socrates ignorance the socratic method or elenchus and thinks enkrateia self control is of pivotal importance which is not the case with Plato s Socrates 19 Generally logoi Sokratikoi cannot help us to reconstruct the historical Socrates even in cases where their narratives overlap due to possible influences authors had among them 20 Aristophanes and other sources Writers of Athenian comedy including Aristophanes also commented on Socrates Aristophanes s most important comedy with respect to Socrates is The Clouds in which Socrates is a central character 21 In this drama Aristophanes presents a caricature of Socrates that leans towards sophism 22 ridiculing Socrates as an absurd atheist 23 Socrates in Clouds is interested in natural philosophy which agrees with Plato s depiction of him in Phaedo What is certain is that by the age of 45 Socrates had already captured the interest of Athenians as a philosopher 24 It is doubtful though whether Aristophanes work is useful in reconstructing the historical Socrates 25 Other ancient authors who wrote about Socrates were Aeschines of Sphettus Antisthenes Aristippus Bryson Cebes Crito Euclid of Megara Phaedo and Aristotle all of whom wrote after Socrates s death 26 Aristotle was not a contemporary of Socrates he studied under Plato at the latter s Academy for twenty years 27 Aristotle treats Socrates without the bias of Xenophon and Plato who had an emotional tie with Socrates and he scrutinizes Socrates s doctrines as a philosopher 28 Aristotle was familiar with the various written and unwritten stories of Socrates 29 The Socratic problem In a seminal work titled The Worth of Socrates as a Philosopher 1818 the philosopher Friedrich Schleiermacher attacked Xenophon s accounts his attack was widely accepted and gave rise to the Socratic problem 30 Schleiermacher criticized Xenophon for his naive representation of Socrates Xenophon was a soldier argued Schleiermacher and was therefore not well placed to articulate Socratic ideas Furthermore Xenophon was biased in his depiction of his former friend and teacher he believed Socrates was treated unfairly by Athens and sought to prove his point of view rather than to provide an impartial account The result said Schleiermacher was that Xenophon portrayed Socrates as an uninspiring philosopher 31 By the early 20th century Xenophon s account was largely rejected 32 The philosopher Karl Joel basing his arguments on Aristotle s interpretation of logos sokratikos suggested that the Socratic dialogues are mostly fictional according to Joel the dialogues authors were just mimicking some Socratic traits of dialogue 33 In mid 20th century philosophers such as Olof Gigon and Eugene Dupreel based on Joel s though proposed that the study of Socrates should focus on the various versions of his character and beliefs rather than aiming to reconstruct a historical Socrates 34 Later ancient philosophy scholar Gregory Vlastos suggested that the early Socratic dialogues of Plato were more compatible with other evidence for a historical Socrates than his later writings an argument that is based on inconsistencies in Plato s own evolving depiction of Socrates Vlastos totally disregarded Xenophon s account except when it agreed with Plato s 34 More recently Charles H Kahn has reinforced the skeptical stance on the unsolvable Socratic problem suggesting that only Plato s Apology has any historical significance 35 Biography Battle of Potidaea 432 BC Athenians against Corinthians detail Scene of Socrates center saving Alcibiades 18th century engraving According to Plato Socrates participated in the Battle of Potidaea the retreat of Battle of Delium and the battle of Amphipolis 422 BC 36 Socrates was born in 470 or 469 BC to Sophroniscus and Phaenarete a stoneworker and a midwife respectively in the Athenian deme of Alopece therefore he was an Athenian citizen having been born to relatively affluent Athenians 37 He lived close to his father s relatives and inherited as was customary part of his father s estate securing a life reasonably free of financial concerns 38 His education followed the laws and customs of Athens He learned the basic skills of reading and writing and like most wealthy Athenians received extra lessons in various other fields such as gymnastics poetry and music 39 He was married twice which came first is not clear his marriage to Xanthippe took place when Socrates was in his fifties and another marriage was with a daughter of Aristides an Athenian statesman 40 He had three sons with Xanthippe 41 Socrates fulfilled his military service during the Peloponnesian War and distinguished himself in three campaigns according to Plato 42 Another incident that reflects Socrates s for the law is the arrest of Leon the Salaminian As Plato describes in his Apology Socrates and four others were summoned to the Tholos and told by representatives of the Thirty Tyrants which began ruling in 404 BCE to arrest Leon for execution Again Socrates was the sole abstainer choosing to risk the tyrants wrath and retribution rather than to participate in what he considered to be a crime 43 Head of Socrates in Palazzo Massimo alle Terme Rome Socrates attracted great interest from the Athenian public and especially the Athenian youth 44 He was notoriously ugly having a flat turned up nose bulging eyes and a large belly his friends joked about his appearance 45 Socrates was indifferent to material pleasures including his own appearance and personal comfort He neglected personal hygiene bathed rarely walked barefoot and owned only one ragged coat 46 He moderated his eating drinking and sex although he did not practice full abstention 46 While he was physically attracted to both sexes as was common and accepted in ancient Greece he resisted his passion for young men because as Plato describes he was more interested in educating their souls 47 Socrates did not seek sex from his disciples as was often the case between older and younger men in Athens 48 Politically he did not take sides in the rivalry between the democrats and the oligarchs in Athens he criticized both 49 The character of Socrates as exhibited in Apology Crito Phaedo and Symposium concurs with other sources to an extent that gives confidence in Plato s depiction of Socrates in these works as being representative of the real Socrates 50 Socrates died in Athens in 399 BC after a trial for impiety and the corruption of the young that lasted for only a day 51 He spent his last day in prison among friends and followers who offered him a route to escape which he refused He died the next morning in accordance with his sentence after drinking poison hemlock 52 He had never left Athens except during the military campaigns which he had participated in 53 Trial of SocratesMain article Trial of Socrates See also The unexamined life is not worth living In 399 BC Socrates went on trial for corrupting the minds of the youth of Athens and for impiety 54 Socrates defended himself unsuccessfully He was found guilty by a majority vote cast by a jury of hundreds of male Athenian citizens and according to the custom proposed his own penalty that he should be given free food and housing by the state for the services he rendered to the city 55 In the alternative he proposed that he be fined one mina of silver according to him all he had 55 The jurors declined his offer and ordered the death penalty 55 The official charges were 1 corrupting youth 2 worshipping false gods and 3 not worshipping the state religion 56 Socrates was charged in a politically tense climate 57 In 404 BC the Athenians had been crushed by Spartans at the decisive naval Battle of Aegospotami and subsequently the Spartans laid siege to Athens They replaced the democratic government with a new pro oligarchic government named the Thirty Tyrants 57 Because of their tyrannical measures some Athenians organized to overthrow the Tyrants and indeed they managed to do so briefly until a Spartan request for aid from the Thirty arrived and a compromise was sought When the Spartans left again however democrats seized the opportunity to kill the oligarchs and reclaim the government of Athens 57 The accusations against Socrates were initiated by a poet Meletus who asked for the death penalty in accordance with the charge of asebeia 57 Other accusers were Anytus and Lycon After a month or two in late spring or early summer the trial started and likely went on for most of one day 57 The religious charges certainly had substance to them Socrates had criticized the anthropomorphism of traditional Greek religion and moreover he was seemingly believing in a daimonion an inner voice linked to a deity 57 Plato s Apology starts with Socrates answering the various rumours against him that have given rise to the indictment 58 First Socrates defends himself against the rumour that he is an atheist naturalist philosopher as portrayed in Aristophanes s The Clouds or a sophist 59 Against the allegations of corrupting the youth Socrates answers that he has never corrupted anyone intentionally since corrupting someone would carry the risk of being corrupted back in return and that would be illogical since corruption is undesirable 60 On the second charge Socrates asks for clarification Meletus responds by repeating the accusation that Socrates is an atheist Socrates notes the contradiction between atheism and worshipping false gods 61 He then claims that he is God s gift to the Athenians since his activities ultimately benefit Athens thus in condemning him to death Athens itself will be the greatest loser 62 After that he says that even though no human can reach wisdom seeking it is the best thing someone can do implying money and prestige are not as precious as commonly thought 63 The Death of Socrates by Jacques Louis David 1787 Socrates was visited by friends in his last night at prison His discussion with them gave rise to Plato s Crito and Phaedo 64 Socrates was given the chance to offer alternative punishments for himself after being found guilty He could have requested permission to flee Athens and live in exile but he did not do so Instead according to Plato he requested that a fine should be imposed on him even suggesting that free meals should be provided for him daily in recognition of his worth to Athens although Xenophon wrote that he made no proposals 65 The jurors favoured the death penalty 66 In return Socrates warned jurors and Athenians that criticism of them by his many disciples was inescapable unless they became good men 55 After a delay caused by Athenian religious ceremonies Socrates spent his last day in prison his friends visiting him and offering him an opportunity to escape which he declined 67 The question of what motivated Athenians to convict Socrates remains a point of controversy among scholars 68 There are two theories The first is that Socrates was convicted on religious grounds the second that he was accused and convicted for political reasons 68 Another more recent interpretation synthesizes the religious and political theories arguing that religion and state were not separate in ancient Athens 69 The argument for religious persecution is supported by the fact that the accounts of the trial by both Plato and Xenophon mostly focus on the charges of impiety In those accounts Socrates is portrayed as making no effort to dispute the fact that he did not believe in the Athenian gods Against this arguments stands the fact that there were many skeptics and atheist philosophers during this time who managed to evade prosecution 70 According to argument for political persecution Socrates was targeted because he was perceived by his countrymen as a threat to democracy It was true that Socrates did not stand for democracy during the reign of Thirty and that most of his pupils were against the democrats 71 The case for it being a political persecution is usually challenged by the existence of an amnesty that was granted to Athenian citizens in 403 BC to prevent escalation to civil war after the fall of oligarchs the Thirty Tyrants but as the text from Socrates s trial and other texts reveal the accusers could have fuelled their rhetoric using events prior to 403 BC 72 PhilosophySocratic method Main article Socratic method The Debate of Socrates and Aspasia by Nicolas Andre Monsiau Socrates s discussions were not limited to a small elite group he engaged in dialogues with foreigners and with people from all social classes and of all genders 73 A fundamental characteristic of Plato s Socrates is the Socratic method or the method of refutation elenchus 74 It is most prominent in the early works of Plato such as Apology Crito Gorgias Republic I and others 75 The typical elenchus proceeds as follows Socrates initiates a discussion about a topic with a known expert on the subject usually in the company of some young men and boys and by dialogue proves the expert s beliefs and arguments to be contradictory 76 Socrates initiates the dialogue by asking his interlocutor for a definition of the subject As he asks more questions the interlocutor s answers eventually contradict the first definition The conclusion is that the expert did not really know the definition in the first place 77 The interlocutor may come up with a different definition That new definition in turn comes under the scrutiny of Socratic questioning With each round of question and answer Socrates and his interlocutor hope to approach the truth More often they continue to reveal their ignorance 78 Since the interlocutors definitions most commonly represent the mainstream opinion on a matter the discussion places doubt on the common opinion 79 Socrates also tests his own opinions through the Socratic method Thus Socrates does not teach a fixed philosophical doctrine Rather he acknowledges his own ignorance while searching for truth with his pupils and interlocutors 79 Scholars have questioned the validity and the exact nature of the Socratic method or indeed if there even was a Socratic method 80 In 1982 the scholar of ancient philosophy Gregory Vlastos claimed that the Socratic method could not be used to establish the truth or falsehood of a proposition Rather Vlastos argued it was a way to show that an interlocutor s beliefs were inconsistent 81 There have been two main lines of thought regarding this view depending on whether it is accepted that Socrates is seeking to prove a claim wrong 82 According to the first line of thought known as the constructivist approach Socrates indeed seeks to refute a claim by this method and the method helps in reaching affirmative statements 83 The non constructivist approach holds that Socrates merely wants to establish the inconsistency between the premises and conclusion of the initial argument 84 Socratic priority of definition Socrates starts his discussions with a search for definitions 85 In most cases Socrates initiates his discourse with an expert on a subject by seeking a definition by asking for example what virtue goodness justice or courage is before discussing the subject further 86 Some scholars have argued that Socrates does not endorse this as a principle because they can locate examples of him not doing so e g in Laches when searching for examples of courage in order to define it 87 Some have argued that this priority of definition comes from Plato rather than Socrates 88 Philosopher Peter Geach accepting that Socrates endorses the priority of definition finds the technique fallacious and criticizes it as follows We know heaps of things without being able to define the terms in which we express our knowledge 89 90 The debate on the issue is still unresolved 91 Socratic ignorance Ruins of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi where Pythia was sited The Delphic aphorism Know thyself was important to Socrates as evident in many Socratic dialogues by Plato especially Apology 92 Plato s Socrates often claims that he is aware of his own lack of knowledge especially when discussing ethical concepts such as arete i e goodness courage since he does not know the nature of such concepts 93 For example during his trial with his life at stake Socrates says I thought Evenus a happy man if he really possesses this art techne and teaches for so moderate a fee Certainly I would pride and preen myself if I knew epistamai these things but I do not know epistamai them gentlemen 94 In another passage when he was informed that the Oracle of Delphi had declared that there is no one wiser than Socrates he relates So I withdrew and thought to myself I am wiser sophoteron than this man it is likely that neither of us knows eidenai anything worthwhile but he thinks he knows something when he does not whereas when I do not know neither do I think I know so I am likely to be wiser than he to this small extent that I do not think I know what I do not know 95 In some of Plato s dialogues Socrates appears to credit himself with some knowledge and can even seem strongly opinionated for a man who professes his own ignorance 96 For example in his Apology he says It is perhaps on this point and in this respect gentlemen that I differ from the majority of men and if I were to claim that I am wiser than anyone in anything it would be in this that as I have no adequate knowledge ouk eidōs hikanōs of things in the underworld so I do not think I have I do know oida however that it is wicked and shameful to do wrong adikein to disobey one s superior be he god or man I shall never fear or avoid things of which I do not know whether they may not be good rather than things that I know oida to be bad 97 This contradiction has puzzled scholars 98 There are varying explanations of the inconsistency mostly in terms of differing interpretations of the meaning of knowledge There is a consensus that Socrates accepts that acknowledging one s lack of knowledge is the first step towards wisdom 99 While Socrates claims that he has acquired cognitive achievement in some aspects of knowledge he denies any wisdom in the most important domains in ethics 100 Socratic irony There is a widespread assumption that Socrates was an ironist mostly based on the depiction of Socrates by Plato and Aristotle 101 Socrates s irony is so subtle and slightly humorous that it often leaves the reader wondering if Socrates is making an intentional pun 102 Plato s Euthyphro is filled with Socratic irony The story begins when Socrates is meeting with Euthyphro a man who has accused his own father of murder Socrates bites Euthyphro several times metaphorically without his interlocutor understanding the irony When Socrates first hears the details of the story he comments It is not I think any random person who could do this prosecute one s father correctly but surely one who is already far progressed in wisdom When Euthyphro is boasting about his understanding of divinity Socrates responds that it is most important that I become your student 103 Socrates is commonly seen as ironic when using praise to flatter or when addressing his interlocutors 104 Aristotle linked Socratic irony to a different meaning Aristotle used the term eirōneia a Greek word later Latinized from which the English word irony comes to describe Socrates s self deprecation Eirōneia then contrary to modern meaning meant to conceal a narrative that was not stated while in today s irony the message is clear even though untold literally 101 Scholars are divided on why Socrates uses irony The mainstream opinion since the Hellenistic period perceives irony as a means to add a playful note to Socrates s speech so as to get the attention of the audience 105 Another line of thought holds that Socrates conceals his philosophical message with irony making it accessible only to those who can separate the parts of his statements which are ironic from those which are not 106 Gregory Vlastos has identified a more complex pattern of irony in Socrates where his words have a double meaning both ironic and not although this opinion is not shared by many other scholars 107 Not everyone was amused by Socratic irony Epicureans the only post Socratic philosophers in ancient times that did not identify themselves as successors of Socrates based their criticism of Socrates on his ironic spirit preferring a more direct approach to teaching Centuries later Friedrich Nietzsche commented along the same lines Dialectics lets you act like a tyrant you humiliate the people you defeat 108 Socratic eudaimonism and intellectualism For Socrates the pursuit of eudaimonia motivates all human action directly or indirectly 109 Virtue and knowledge are linked in Socrates s view to eudaimonia but how closely he considered them to be connected is still debated Some argue that Socrates thought that virtue knowledge and eudaimonia are identical while another opinion holds that for Socrates virtue serves as a means to eudaimonia the identical and sufficiency thesis respectively 110 Another point of debate is whether according to Socrates it is actual good that people desire or rather only what they perceive as good 110 In Plato s Protagoras 345c4 e6 Socrates implies that no one errs willingly which has become the hallmark of Socratic intellectualism 111 Socrates is intellectualist because he gave a prominent role to virtue and knowledge He was also a motivational intellectualist since he believed that human actions are guided by a cognitive power to comprehend what they desire while diminishing the role of impulses 112 Priority given to the intellect as being the way to live a good life diminishing or placing aside irrational beliefs or passions is the hallmark of Socratic moral philosophy 113 Plato s dialogues that support Socrates s intellectual motivism as this Socratic thesis is named are mainly the Gorgias 467c 8e where Socrates discusses the actions of a tyrant that do not benefit him and Meno 77d 8b where Socrates explains to Meno his view that no one wants bad things unless they don t have knowledge of what is good and bad in the first place 114 Socrates s total rejection of akrasia acting because of your irrational passions contrary to your knowledge or beliefs has puzzled scholars Most believe that Socrates left no space for irrational desires although some claim that Socrates acknowledged the existence of irrational motivations but denied they play a primary role in decision making 115 Religion Henri Estienne s 1578 edition of Euthyphro parallel Latin and Greek text Estienne s translations were heavily used and reprinted for more than two centuries 116 Socrates s discussion with Euthyphro still remains influential in theological debates 117 Socrates s religious nonconformity challenged the views of his times and his critique reshaped religious discourse for the coming centuries 118 In Ancient Greece and therefore in Athens organized religion was fragmented celebrated in a number of festivals for specific gods such as the City Dionysia or in domestic rituals and there were no sacred texts Religion therefore intermingled with the daily life of citizens who performed their personal religious duties mainly with sacrifices to various gods 119 Whether Socrates was a practicing man of religion or a provocateur atheist has been a point of debate since ancient times his trial included impiety accusations and the controversy hasn t yet ceased 120 Socrates discusses divinity and the soul mostly in Alcibiades Euthyphro and Apology 121 In Alcibiades Socrates links the human soul to divinity concluding Then this part of her resembles God and whoever looks at this and comes to know all that is divine will gain thereby the best knowledge of himself 122 His discussions on religion always fall under the scope of his rationalism 123 Socrates in Euthyphro discusses piety where he reaches a revolutionary conclusion which takes him far from the age s usual practice he deems sacrifices to the gods to be useless especially when they are driven by the hope of receiving a reward in return Instead he calls for philosophy and the pursuit of knowledge to be the principal way towards worshipping the gods 124 The rejection of traditional forms of piety placed a moral burden on ordinary Athenians who were also his jurors at his trial 125 Socrates argued that the gods were inherently wise and just a perception far from traditional religion at that time 125 In Euthyphro the Euthyphro dilemma arises Socrates questions his interlocutor about the relationship between piety and the will of a powerful god Is something good because it is the will of this god or is it the will of this god because it is good 126 In other words does piety follow the good or the god The implications of this puzzle lead to the rejection of the traditional Greek theology since the Homeric gods fought against each other Socrates thought that goodness in essence is independent from gods and gods must themselves be pious 117 Socrates affirms a belief in gods in Plato s Apology where he says to the jurors that he acknowledges gods more than his accusers 127 For Plato s Socrates the existence of gods is taken for granted in none of his dialogues does he probe whether gods exist or not 128 In Apology a case for Socrates being agnostic can be made based on his discussion of the great unknown after death 129 and in Phaedo the dialogue with his students in his last day Socrates gives expression to a clear belief in the immortality of the soul 130 He also believed in oracles divinations and other messages from gods These signs did not offer him any positive belief on moral issues rather they were predictions of future events that couldn t be assessed through reason 131 In Xenophon s Memorabilia Socrates constructs an argument that resonates with a belief in intelligent design He claims that since there are a lot of features in the universe that exhibit signs of forethought e g eyelids a divine creator must have created the universe 128 He then deduces that the creator should be omniscient and omnipotent and also that he created the universe for the advance of humankind since humans naturally have many abilities that other animals do not 132 At times Socrates speaks of a single deity while at other times he refers to plural gods This has been interpreted as meaning that he either believed that a supreme deity was in command of other gods or that various gods were parts or manifestations of this single deity 133 It has been a source of puzzlement how Socratic religious beliefs can be consistent with his strict adherence to rationalism 134 Philosophy professor Mark McPherran suggests that Socrates inspected and interpreted every divine sign through secular rationality for confirmation 135 Professor of ancient philosophy A A Long suggests that it would be anachronistic to suppose that Socrates believed the religious and rational realms were separate 136 Socratic daimonion Alcibiades Receiving Instruction from Socrates a 1776 painting by Francois Andre Vincent depicting Socrates s daimon 137 In several texts e g Plato s Euthyphro 3b5 Apology 31c d Xenophon s Memorabilia 1 1 2 Socrates claims he hears a daimōnic sign an inner voice heard usually when he was about to make a mistake Socrates claims at his trial that this is what prevented him from entering into politics explaining further that The reason for this is something you have heard me frequently mention in different places namely the fact that I experience something divine and daimonic as Meletus has inscribed in his indictment by way of mockery It started in my childhood the occurrence of a particular voice Whenever it occurs it always deters me from the course of action I was intending to engage in but it never gives me positive advice It is this that has opposed my practicing politics and I think its doing so has been absolutely fine 138 Modern scholarship has variously interpreted this Socratic daimōnion as a rational source of knowledge an impulse a dream or even a paranormal experience felt by an ascetic Socrates 139 Virtue and knowledge Socrates is known for disavowing knowledge a claim encapsulated in the saying I know that I know nothing This is often attributed to Socrates on the basis of a statement in Plato s Apology though the same view is repeatedly found elsewhere in Plato s early writings on Socrates 140 In other statements though he implies or even claims that he does have knowledge For example in Plato s Apology Socrates says but that to do injustice and disobey my superior god or man this I know to be evil and base Ap 29B6 7 141 In his debate with Callicles he says I know well that if you will agree with me on those things which my soul believes those things will be the very truth 141 Whether Socrates genuinely thought he lacked knowledge or merely feigned a belief in his own ignorance remains a matter of debate A common interpretation is that he was indeed feigning modesty According to Norman Gulley Socrates did this to entice his interlocutors to speak with him On the other hand Terence Irwin claims that Socrates s words should be taken literally 142 Vlastos argues that there is enough evidence to refute both claims On his view for Socrates there are two separate meanings of knowledge Knowledge C and Knowledge E C stands for certain and E stands for elenchus i e the Socratic method Knowledge C is the something unquestionable whereas Knowledge E is the result of Socrates s elenchus his way of examining things 143 Thus Socrates speaks the truth when he says he knows C something and he is also truthful when saying he knows E for example that it is evil for someone to disobey his superiors as he claims in Apology 144 Not everyone has been impressed by this semantic dualism Lesher argued that Socrates claimed in various dialogues that one word is linked to one meaning i e in Hippias major Meno Laches 145 Lesher suggests that although Socrates claimed that he had no knowledge regarding the nature of virtues he thought that in some cases someone could have knowledge on some ethical propositions 146 Socrates s theory of virtue states that all virtues are essentially one since they are a form of knowledge 147 In Protagoras Socrates makes the case for the unity of virtues using the example of courage if someone has knowledge of the danger he can undertake risks 148 Aristotle comments Socrates the elder thought that the end of life was knowledge of virtue and he used to seek for the definition of justice courage and each of the parts of virtue and this was a reasonable approach since he thought that all virtues were sciences and that as soon as one knew for example justice he would be just 149 Love Socrates and Alcibiades by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg Some texts suggest that Socrates had love affairs with Alcibiades and other young males others suggest that Socrates s friendship with young boys sought only to improve them and were not sexual In Gorgias Socrates claims he was a dual lover of Alcibiades and philosophy and his flirtatiousness is evident in Protagoras Meno 76a c and Phaedrus 227c d However the exact nature of his relationship with Alcibiades is not clear since Socrates was known for his self restraint while Alcibiades admits in the Symposium that he had tried to seduce Socrates but failed 150 The Socratic theory of love is mostly deduced from Lysis where Socrates engages in a discussion about love 151 at a wrestling school in the company of Lysis and his friends They start their dialogue by investigating parental love and how it manifests with respect to the freedom and boundaries which parents set for their child Socrates concludes that if Lysis is utterly useless nobody will love him not even his parents While most scholars consider this text to be humorous in intention it has also been suggested that it reveals the Socratic doctrine on love which is an egoistic one according to which we only love people who are useful to us in some way 152 Other scholars disagree with this view arguing that Socrates s doctrine leaves room for non egoistic love for a spouse still others deny that Socrates suggests any egoistic motivation at all 153 A form of utility that children have for parents as Socrates claims in Symposium is that they offer the false impression of immortality 154 Scholars note that for Socrates love is rational 155 Socratic philosophy of politics Socrates viewed himself as a political artist In Plato s Gorgias he tells Callicles I believe that I m one of a few Athenians so as not to say I m the only one but the only one among our contemporaries to take up the true political craft and practice the true politics This is because the speeches I make on each occasion do not aim at gratification but at what s best 156 His claim illustrates his aversion for the established democratic assemblies and procedures such as voting as Socrates did not hold any respect for politicians and rhetoricians who would stoop to using tricks to mislead the public 157 He never ran for office or suggested any legislation 158 Rather he aimed to help the city flourish by improving its citizens 157 As a citizen he abided by the law He obeyed the rules and carried out his military duty by fighting wars abroad His dialogues however make little mention of contemporary political decisions such as the Sicilian Expedition 158 Socrates spent his time conversing with citizens among them powerful members of Athenian society scrutinizing their beliefs and bringing the contradictions of their ideas to light Socrates believed he was doing them a favor since for him politics was about shaping the moral landscape of the city through philosophy rather than electoral procedures 159 There is a debate over where Socrates stood in among the polarized political climate among ancient Athens s oligarchs and democrats While there is no clear textual evidence one widely held theory holds that Socrates leaned towards democracy he disobeyed the one order that the oligarchic government of the Thirty Tyrants handed to him he respected laws and the political system of Athens which was formulated by democrats and lastly it is argued that his affinity for the ideals of democratic Athens was a reason why he did not want to escape prison and the death penalty On the other hand there is some evidence that Socrates leaned towards oligarchy most of his friends supported oligarchy he was contemptuous of the opinion of the many and was critical of the democratic process and his conversation in Protagoras from the pen of Plato displays some anti democratic elements 160 A less mainstream argument suggests that Socrates was for democratic republicanism placing Athens above the people and occupying in the middle ground of democrats and oligarchs 161 Yet another suggestion is that Socrates was in line with liberalism a political ideology formed in the Age of Enlightenment This argument is mostly based on Crito and Apology where Socrates talks about the mutually beneficial relationship between the city and its citizens 162 Also Socrates has been seen as the first proponent of civil disobedience Socrates s strong objection to injustice along with his refusal to serve the Thirty Tyrant s order to arrest Leon are suggestive of this line as he says in Critias One ought never act unjustly even to repay a wrong that has been done to oneself 163 In the broader picture Socrates s counsel would be for citizens to follow the orders of the state unless after much reflection they deem them to be unjust 164 LegacyHellenistic era Carnelian gem imprint representing Socrates Rome 1st century BC 1st century AD Socrates s impact was immense in philosophy after his death Almost all philosophical currents after Socrates traced their roots to him Plato s Academy Aristotle s Lyceum the Cynics and the Stoics 165 Interest in Socrates kept increasing until the third century AD 166 He was considered to be the man who moved philosophy from a study of the natural world as was the case for pre Socratic philosophers to a study of humanity 167 The Socratic priority of eudaimonia was accepted among all his successors happiness restrained from excesses that ultimately end in misery They differed in response to fundamental questions such as the purpose of life or the nature of arete goodness since Socrates had not handed them an answer and therefore philosophical schools subsequently diverged greatly in their interpretation of his thought 168 Immediate followers of Socratism were his pupils Euclid Aristippus and Antisthenes who drew differing conclusions among themselves and followed independent trajectories 169 Antisthenes had a profound contempt of material goods since virtue was all that mattered a line of thought that was continued by Diogenes and the Cynics 170 On the opposite end Aristippus endorsed the accumulation of wealth and lived a luxurious life after leaving Athens and returning to his home city of Cyrene he founded the Cyrenaic philosophical school which was based on hedonism living an easy life with physical pleasures His school passed to his grandson bearing the same name There is a dialogue in Xenophon s work where Aristippus claims he wants to live without wishing to rule or be ruled by others 171 In addition Aristippus maintained a skeptical stance on epistemology claiming that we can be certain only of our own feelings resonating with the Socratic understanding of our ignorance 172 Euclid was a contemporary of Socrates After Socrates s trial and death he left Athens for the nearby town of Megara where he founded a school named the Megarians His theory was built on the pre Socratic monism of Parmenides For Parmenides only one thing existed and that was the good Socrates was searching for Euclid continued Socrates s thought The full doctrines of Socrates s pupils are difficult to reconstruct It is clear however that their impact reached Cicero 173 The stoics relied heavily on Socrates 174 They applied the Socratic method as a tool to avoid inconsistencies Their moral doctrines focused on how to live a smooth life through wisdom and virtue giving a crucial role to virtue for happiness and the relation between goodness and ethical excellence all of which echoed Socratic thought 175 At the same time the philosophical current of Platonism claimed Socrates as their predecessor in ethics and in their theory of knowledge skepticism Arcesilaus the head of the Academy after Plato continued the Socratic philosophy of ignorance and competed with the Stoics over who was the true heir of Socrates with regard to ethics 176 While the Stoics insisted on knowledge based ethics Arcesilaus relied on Socratic ignorance The Stoics reply to Arcesilaus was that Socratic ignorance was part of Socratic irony they themselves disapproved the use of irony an argument that ultimately became the dominant narrative of Socrates in later antiquity 177 While Aristotle considered Socrates a major philosopher his writing did not focus on him to the same degree as it did on other pre Socratic philosophers and most of his followers did not comment on Socrates at all One of Aristotle s pupils unleashed an ad hominem attack on Socrates Aristoxenus authored a book full of Socrates s scandals it was not well received by ancient critics The Epicureans later weaponized Socratic irony in their polemic against Socrates 178 They also attacked him for superstition given his story with the Delphi oracle 179 Epicurus the founder of epicureanism living in the 4th and 3rd century BC came across various currents claiming to be Socratic The Epicureans criticized Socrates for his character and various faults and focused mostly on his irony which was deemed inappropriate for a philosopher and unseemly for a teacher Also his Socratic ignorance did not resonate well with their criteria of truths 180 Medieval world Depiction of Socrates by 13th century Seljuk illustrator Socratic thought found its way to the Islamic Middle East alongside that of Aristotle and the Stoics Plato s works on Socrates as well as other ancient Greek literature were translated into Arabic by prominent early Muslim scholars such as Al Kindi Jabir ibn Hayyan and the Muʿtazila For Muslim scholars Socrates was hailed and admired for combining his ethics with his lifestyle perhaps because of the resemblance in this regard with Muhammad s life 181 Socratic doctrines were altered to match Islamic faith according to Muslim scholars Socrates made arguments for monotheism for a caring god in particular and for the temporality of this world and rewards in the next life 182 His influence on the Arabic world continues to the present day 183 In medieval times little of Socrates s thought survived in the Christian world as a whole however works on Socrates from Christian scholars such as Lactantius Eusebius and Augustine were maintained in the Byzantine Empire where Socrates was studied under a strong Christian lens 184 After the fall of Constantinople many of the texts were brought back into the world of Roman Christianity where they were translated into Latin Overall ancient Socratic philosophy like the rest of classical literature before the Renaissance was addressed with hostility in the Christian world at first 185 During the early phase of the Italian Renaissance two different narratives of Socrates developed 186 On the one hand the humanist movement revived interest in classical authors and in particular Leonardo Bruni translated many of Plato s Socratic dialogues while his pupil Giannozzo Manetti authored a well circulated book a Life of Socrates They both presented a civic version of Socrates with Socrates being a humanist and a supporter of republicanism Bruni and Manetti were mostly interested in defending secularism as a non sinful way of life and so presenting a view of Socrates that was aligned with the Christian morality assisted their cause But in doing so they had to censor parts of his dialogues especially those which appeared to promote homosexuality or any possibility of pederasty with Alcibiades or of representing Socratic ignorance as a tool and his daimon as a god 187 On the other hand a different picture of Socrates was presented by Italian Neoplatonists led by the influential philosopher and priest Marsilio Ficino who was impressed by the un hierarchical and informal way of Socratic teaching which he tried to replicate Ficino portrayed a holy picture of Socrates finding parallels with the life of Jesus Christ For Ficino and his followers Socratic ignorance signified his acknowledgement that all wisdom is God given through his inner voice Socratic daimon 188 Modern times Socrates along with his wives he was married once or twice and students appears in many paintings Here Socrates his two Wives and Alcibiades a painting by the Dutch Golden Age artist Reyer van Blommendael Often his wife Xanthippe alone or with Myrto the other alleged wife of Socrates is depicted emptying a pot of urine hydria over Socrates 189 In early modern France Socrates s image was dominated by features of his private life rather than his philosophical thought in various novels and satirical plays 190 Some thinkers used Socrates to highlight and comment upon controversies of their own era like Theophile de Viau who portrayed a Christianized Socrates accused of atheism 191 while for Voltaire the figure of Socrates represented a reason based theist 192 Michel de Montaigne wrote extensively on Socrates linking him to rationalism as a counterweight to contemporary religious fanatics 193 In the 18th century German idealism revived philosophical interest in Socrates mainly through Hegel s work For Hegel Socrates marked a turning point in the history of humankind by the introduction of the principle of free subjectivity or self determination While Hegel hails Socrates for his contribution he nonetheless justifies the Athenian court for Socrates s insistence upon self determination would be destructive of the Sittlichkeit a Hegelian term signifying the way of life as shaped by the institutions and laws of the State 194 Also Hegel sees the Socratic use of rationalism as a continuation of Protagoras subjectivism as stated by the homo mensura principle Man is the measure of all things somewhat modified it is our reasoning that measures all things 195 The Socratic method also came to influence Hegel as it is closely related to Hegelian dialectics Hegel did not see the Socratic method as maieutic since it was used to refute various arguments but not to yield any positive conclusions 196 Also Hegel considered Socrates as a predecessor of later ancient skeptic philosophers even though he never clearly explained why 197 Soren Kierkegaard considered Socrates his teacher 198 and authored his masters thesis on him The Concept of Irony with Continual Reference to Socrates 199 There he argues that Socrates is not a moral philosopher but is purely an ironist 200 He also focused on Socrates s avoidance of writing for Kierkegaard this avoidance was a sign of humility deriving from a true acceptance of his ignorance 201 Not only did Socrates not write anything down but his contemporaries misconstrued and misunderstood him as a philosopher leaving us with an almost impossible task in comprehending Socratic thought 199 Only Plato s Apology was close to the real Socrates according to Kierkegaard 202 In his writings he revisited Socrates quite frequently at a later stage Kierkegaard s view on him as a pure ironist shifted and he found ethical elements in Socratic thought 200 Socrates was not only a subject of study for Kierkegaard he was a model as well for Kierkegaard paralleled his task as a philosopher to Socrates He writes The only analogy I have before me is Socrates my task is a Socratic task to audit the definition of what it is to be a Christian with his aim being to bring society closer to the Christian ideal since he believed that Christianity had become a formality void of any Christian essence 203 Kierkegaard denied being a Christian as Socrates denied possessing any knowledge so aiming to intrigue their contemporaries 204 The hostility of Friedrich Nietzsche against Socrates for reshaping the philosophical landscape of humanity is well known 205 Nietzsche accused Socrates of responsibility for what he saw as the deterioration of the ancient Greek civilization during the 4th century BC and after in his first book The Birth of Tragedy 1872 For Nietzsche Socrates turned the scope of philosophy from pre Socratic naturalism to rationalism and intellectualism He writes I conceive of the Presocratics as precursors to a reformation of the Greeks but not of Socrates with Empedocles and Democritus the Greeks were well on their way towards taking the correct measure of human existence its unreason its suffering they never reached this goal thanks to Socrates 206 The effect Nietzsche proposed was a perverse situation that had continued down to his day our culture is a Socratic culture he believed 205 In a later publication The Twilight of the Idols 1887 Nietzsche continued his offensive against Socrates focusing on the arbitrary linking of reason to virtue and happiness in Socratic thinking He writes I try to understand from what partial and idiosyncratic states the Socratic problem is to be derived his equation of reason virtue happiness It was with this absurdity of a doctrine of identity that he fascinated ancient philosophy never again freed itself from this fascination 207 From the late 19th century until the early 20th the most common explanation of Nietzsche s hostility towards Socrates was his anti rationalism he considered Socrates the father of European rationalism In the middle of the 20th century philosopher Walter Kaufmann published an article arguing for Nietzsche s admiration of Socrates and current mainstream opinion is that Nietzsche was ambivalent towards Socrates 208 Continental philosophers Hannah Arendt Leo Strauss and Karl Popper after experiencing the horrors of World War II amidst the rise of totalitarian regimes saw Socrates as an icon of individual conscience 209 Arendt in her book Eichmann in Jerusalem 1963 sees how Socrates s constant questioning and self reflection could prevent the banality of evil 210 Conservative philosopher Leo Strauss considers Socrates s political thought as paralleling Plato s He sees an elitist Socrates in Plato s Republic as exemplifying why the polis is not and could not be an ideal way of organizing life since philosophical truths cannot be digested by the masses 211 The contrary view is held by Karl Popper who considers Socrates as fundamentally opposing Plato s totalitarian ideas For Popper Socratic individualism along with Athenian democracy lead to the creation of their most significant contribution to humankind the open society which is the hallmark of Popper s philosophy as described in his Open Society and Its Enemies 1945 212 The statue of Socrates outside the National Library of Uruguay Montevideo Socrates in popular culture Socrates has been widely recognized for his contribution to philosophy but his fame is more widespread than this and he appears in many aspects of popular culture His name has been given to philosophical institutions programs buildings and parks Even a crater on the Moon bears his name He has featured in novels books films TV series songs and compositions Socrates inspired a generation of Romantic poets Percy Bysshe Shelley compared Socrates to Jesus American statesmen like Benjamin Franklin and James Madison spoke highly of Socrates as did Martin Luther King Jr who attributed the attainment of academic freedom to him 213 See also Philosophy portal Bibliography of Socrates De genio Socratis List of cultural depictions of Socrates List of speakers in Plato s dialogues Socratic fallacy Socratic LettersNotes Jones 2006 Guthrie 1972 pp 5 7 Dorion 2011 pp 1 2 May 2000 p 9 Waterfield 2013 p 1 May 2000 p 20 Dorion 2011 p 7 Waterfield 2013 p 1 Doring 2011 pp 24 25 Dorion 2011 pp 7 9 Guthrie 1972 pp 13 15 a b c Guthrie 1972 pp 15 Cite error The named reference FOOTNOTEGuthrie197215 was defined multiple times with different content see the help page Cite error The named reference FOOTNOTEGuthrie197215 was defined multiple times with different content see the help page Guthrie 1972 pp 15 16 amp 28 Guthrie 1972 pp 15 16 Guthrie 1972 p 18 Guthrie 1972 pp 20 23 Guthrie 1972 pp 25 26 Guthrie 1972 pp 29 31 Dorion 2011 p 6 Guthrie 1972 p 30 Guthrie 1972 pp 29 33 Waterfield 2013 pp 3 4 May 2000 p 20 Dorion 2011 p 6 7 May 2000 p 20 Waterfield 2013 pp 3 4 May 2000 pp 19 20 Dorion 2011 pp 4 10 Waterfield 2013 pp 10 13 Guthrie 1972 pp 39 41 Guthrie 1972 pp 39 51 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 5 Konstan 2011 pp 85 88 Waterfield 2013 pp 7 8 Vlastos 1991 p 52 Kahn 1998 pp 1 2 Guthrie 1972 pp 35 36 Guthrie 1972 p 38 Guthrie 1972 pp 38 39 Dorion 2011 pp 1 3 Dorion 2011 pp 2 3 Dorion 2011 p 5 Dorion 2011 pp 7 10 a b Dorion 2011 pp 12 14 Dorion 2011 pp 17 18 Guthrie 1972 p 2 Ober 2010 pp 159 160 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 1 Guthrie 1972 p 58 Dorion 2011 p 12 Nails 2020 A chronology of the historical Socrates in the context of Athenian history and the dramatic dates of Plato s dialogues Ober 2010 pp 160 161 Ober 2010 pp 161 162 Ober 2010 p 161 Guthrie 1972 p 65 Guthrie 1972 p 59 Guthrie 1972 p 65 Ober 2010 pp 167 171 Guthrie 1972 p 78 Guthrie 1972 pp 66 67 a b Guthrie 1972 p 69 Guthrie 1972 pp 70 75 Nails 2020 Socrates s strangeness Obdrzalek 2013 pp 210 211 Nails 2020 Socrates s strangeness Guthrie 1972 pp 92 94 Nails 2020 Socrates s strangeness Kahn 1998 p 75 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 15 19 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 17 21 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 10 May 2000 p 30 a b c d May 2000 pp 47 48 May 2000 p 40 a b c d e f Nails 2020 A Chronology of the historical Socrates May 2000 p 31 May 2000 pp 33 39 May 2000 pp 41 42 May 2000 p 42 May 2000 p 43 May 2000 pp 45 46 Guthrie 1972 pp 65 66 Guthrie 1972 pp 63 65 Ahbel Rappe 2011 Ober 2010 p 146 Guthrie 1972 pp 64 65 Guthrie 1972 pp 20 amp 65 66 Ober 2010 p 146 a b Ralkowski 2013 p 302 Ralkowski 2013 p 323 Ralkowski 2013 pp 319 322 Ralkowski 2013 pp 307 308 Ralkowski 2013 pp 303 304 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 53 Benson 2011 p 179 Wolfsdorf 2013 pp 34 35 Wolfsdorf 2013 p 34 Others include Charmides Crito Euthydemus Euthyphro Hippias Major Hippias Minor Ion Laches Lysis Protagoras Benson 2011 p 179 also adds parts of Meno Benson 2011 pp 182 184 Wolfsdorf 2013 pp 34 35 Benson 2011 p 184 Guthrie 1972 pp 125 127 a b Guthrie 1972 pp 128 129 Benson 2011 p 179 185 193 Benson 2011 p 185 Wolfsdorf 2013 pp 34 35 Ambury 2020 The Elenchus Socrates the Refuter Benson 2011 p 185 Wolfsdorf 2013 p 44 Ambury 2020 The Elenchus Socrates the Refuter Benson 2011 p 185 Ambury 2020 The Elenchus Socrates the Refuter Benson 2011 names in a note scholars that are of constructivist and non constructivism approach Among those constructivists willing to do so are Brickhouse and Smith 1994 ch 6 1 Burnet 1924 pp 136 137 McPherran 1985 Rabinowitz 1958 Reeve 1989 ch 1 10 Taylor 1982 and Vlastos 1991 ch 6 Those who do not think a Socratic account of piety is implied by the text anticonstructivists include Allen 1970 pp 6 9 67 and Grote 1865 pp 437 57 Beckman 1979 ch 2 1 Calef 1995 and Versenyi 1982 p 118 Benson 2013 p 136 Benson 2013 pp 136 139 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 71 Benson 2013 pp 143 145 Bett 2011 p 228 Benson 2013 pp 143 145 147 Bett 2011 p 229 Benson 2013 p 145 Geach Peter 1966 Plato s Euthyphro An Analysis and Commentary The Monist 50 3 371 doi 10 5840 monist196650327 ISSN 0026 9662 Benson 2013 p 155 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 144 Guthrie 1972 p 222 Bett 2011 p 215 McPartland 2013 pp 94 95 McPartland 2013 p 98 McPartland 2013 p 99 McPartland 2013 pp 108 109 McPartland 2013 p 109 McPartland 2013 p 117 McPartland 2013 pp 118 119 McPartland 2013 p 135 a b Lane 2011 p 239 Vasiliou 2013 p 20 Vasiliou 2013 p 24 Lane 2011 p 239 Lane 2011 pp 249 251 Lane 2011 pp 241 242 Lane 2011 p 243 Vasiliou 2013 pp 28 29 Lane 2011 p 244 Penner 2011 pp 259 261 Brickhouse amp Smith 2013 p 185 Vlastos 1991 p 203 a b Reshotko 2013 p 159 Segvic 2006 pp 171 173 Brickhouse amp Smith 2013 p 185 Segvic 2006 p 171 Brickhouse amp Smith 2013 pp 185 186 Brickhouse amp Smith 2013 pp 190 191 Ausland 2019 pp 686 687 a b McPherran 2011 p 117 McPherran 2013 p 257 McPherran 2013 pp 259 260 McPherran 2013 pp 257 258 Guthrie 1972 pp 151 153 Guthrie 1972 p 153 McPherran 2013 pp 260 262 McPherran 2011 p 111 McPherran 2013 p 265 a b McPherran 2013 p 266 McPherran 2013 p 263 See also note 30 for further reference McPherran 2011 p 117 McPherran 2013 pp 272 273 a b McPherran 2013 pp 270 271 Guthrie 1972 pp 157 158 Guthrie 1972 pp 160 164 McPherran 2011 pp 123 127 McPherran 2013 pp 270 271 Long 2009 p 63 McPherran 2013 p 272 Long 2009 p 63 McPherran 2011 p 114 McPherran 2011 p 124 Long 2009 p 64 Lapatin 2009 p 146 Long 2009 pp 63 64 Long 2009 pp 65 66 70 Vlastos 1985 p 1 a b Vlastos 1985 pp 6 7 Vlastos 1985 p 1 2 Lesher 1987 p 275 Lesher 1987 p 276 Lesher 1987 p 276 Vasiliou 2013 p 28 Lesher 1987 p 278 McPartland 2013 p 123 McPartland 2013 pp 123 124 Guthrie 1972 p 131 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 183 184 Guthrie 1972 p 131 Guthrie 1972 p 131 Ahbel Rappe amp Kamtekar 2009 p 72 Obdrzalek 2013 pp 210 211 Obdrzalek 2013 pp 211 212 Rudebusch 2009 p 187 Obdrzalek 2013 pp 214 215 Obdrzalek 2013 p 212 Obdrzalek 2013 p 231 Obdrzalek 2013 p 230 Griswold 2011 Johnson 2013 p 234 a b Johnson 2013 p 234 a b Griswold 2011 p 334 Johnson 2013 p 235 Johnson 2013 pp 236 237 Johnson 2013 p 238 Johnson 2013 pp 239 241 Johnson 2013 pp 241 242 Johnson 2013 pp 255 256 Guthrie 1972 p 165 Long 2011 p 355 Long 2011 pp 355 356 Long 2011 p 358 Guthrie 1972 pp 165 166 Guthrie 1972 p 169 Guthrie 1972 p 170 Guthrie 1972 pp 170 174 Guthrie 1972 pp 175 177 Guthrie 1972 pp 179 183 Long 2011 p 362 Long 2011 pp 362 264 Long 2011 pp 364 365 Long 2011 p 367 Long 2011 pp 368 369 Long 2011 p 374 Campos Daroca 2019 p 240 Lane 2011 p 244 Long 2011 p 370 Alon 2009 pp 317 318 Alon 2009 pp 325 326 Alon 2009 p 332 Trizio 2019 pp 609 610 Hankins 2009 pp 237 340 Hankins 2009 pp 348 349 Hankins 2009 pp 341 346 Hankins 2009 pp 346 348 Lapatin 2009 pp 133 139 McLean 2009 pp 353 354 McLean 2009 p 355 Loughlin 2019 p 665 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 12 Bowman 2019 pp 751 753 Bowman 2019 pp 753 761 763 Bowman 2019 pp 754 755 White 2009 pp 373 374 Schur amp Yamato 2019 p 820 a b Schur amp Yamato 2019 p 824 a b Muench 2009 p 389 Schur amp Yamato 2019 pp 824 825 Muench 2009 p 390 Muench 2009 pp 390 391 Quote from Kierkegaard essay My Task 1855 Muench 2009 p 394 a b Raymond 2019 p 837 Porter 2009 pp 408 409 Ambury 2020 Legacy How Have Other Philosophers Understood Socrates Porter 2009 pp 410 411 Raymond 2019 pp 837 839 Ahbel Rappe 2011 p 127 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 137 138 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 138 140 Ahbel Rappe 2011 pp 140 142 Nails 2020 The Socratic tradition and its reach beyond philosophy See also Supplement The Reception of Socrates SourcesAhbel Rappe Sara Kamtekar Rachana 2009 A Companion to Socrates Wiley ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Ahbel Rappe Sara 2011 Socrates A Guide for the Perplexed A amp C Black ISBN 978 0 8264 3325 1 Alon Ilai 2009 Socrates in Arabic Philosophy In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 313 326 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Ambury James M 2020 Socrates Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy Retrieved 2 June 2021 Ausland Hayden W 15 May 2019 Socrates in the Early Nineteenth Century Become Young and Beautiful In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates BRILL pp 685 718 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Benson Hugh H 2011 Socratic Method In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 179 200 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 008 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Benson Hugh H 3 January 2013 The priority of definition In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 136 155 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Bett Richard 2011 Socratic Ignorance In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 215 236 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 010 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Bowman Brady 15 May 2019 Hegel on Socrates and the Historical Advent of Moral Self Consciousness In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates BRILL pp 749 792 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Brickhouse Thomas C Smith Nicholas D 3 January 2013 Socratic Moral Psychology In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 185 209 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Campos Daroca F Javier 15 May 2019 Epicurus and the Epicureans on Socrates and the Socratics In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates BRILL ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Doring Klaus 2011 The Students of Socrates In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 24 47 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 002 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Dorion Louis Andre 2011 The Rise and Fall of the Socratic Problem In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 1 23 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 001 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Guthrie W K C 1972 A History of Greek Philosophy Volume 3 The Fifth Century Enlightenment Part 2 Socrates Cambridge University Press doi 10 1017 CBO9780511518454 ISBN 978 0 521 09667 6 Griswold Charles L 2011 Socrates Political Philosophy In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 333 352 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 014 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Hankins James 2009 Socrates in the Italian Renaissance In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 337 352 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Johnson Curtis 3 January 2013 Socrates political philosophy In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 233 256 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Jones Daniel 8 June 2006 English Pronouncing Dictionary Cambridge University Press ISBN 978 0 521 68086 8 Kahn Charles H 4 June 1998 Plato and the Socratic Dialogue The Philosophical Use of a Literary Form Cambridge University Press doi 10 1017 CBO9780511585579 ISBN 978 0 521 64830 1 Konstan David 2011 Socrates in Aristophanes Clouds In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 75 90 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 004 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Lane Josiah 2011 Socrates and Democratic Athens In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 138 178 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 007 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Lapatin Keneth 2009 Picturing Socrates In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 110 155 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Lesher J H James H 1987 Socrates Disavowal of Knowledge Journal of the History of Philosophy Project Muse 25 2 275 288 doi 10 1353 hph 1987 0033 ISSN 1538 4586 S2CID 171007876 Long A A 2009 How Does Socrates Divine Sign Communicate with Him In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 63 74 doi 10 1002 9780470996218 ch5 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Long A A 2011 Socrates in Later Greek Philosophy In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 355 379 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 015 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Loughlin Felicity P 15 May 2019 Socrates and Religious Debate in the Scottish Enlightenment In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates BRILL pp 658 683 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 May Hope 2000 On Socrates Wadsworth Thomson Learning ISBN 978 0 534 57604 2 McPherran Mark L 2011 Socratic religion In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 111 127 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 006 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 McPherran Mark L 3 January 2013 Socratic theology and piety In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 257 277 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 McPartland Melissa 3 January 2013 Reconsidering Socratic Irony In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 237 259 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 McLean Daniel R 2009 The Private Life of Socrates in Early Modern France In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 353 367 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Muench Paul 2009 Kierkegaard s Socratic Point of View In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 389 405 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Nails Debra 2020 Edward N Zalta ed Socrates Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy O Connor David K 2011 Xenophon and the Enviable Life of Socrates In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 48 74 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 003 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Ober Josiah 2010 Socrates and Democratic Athens In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 138 178 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 007 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Obdrzalek Suzanne 3 January 2013 Socrates on Love In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 210 232 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Penner Terry 2011 Socratic Ethics and the Socratic Psychology of Action A Philosophical Framework In Donald R Morrison ed The Cambridge Companion to Socrates Cambridge University Press pp 260 292 doi 10 1017 CCOL9780521833424 012 ISBN 978 0 521 83342 4 Porter James I 2009 Nietzsche and The Problem of Socrates In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 406 425 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Ralkowski Mark 3 January 2013 The politics of impiety why was Socrates prosecuted by the Athenian democracy In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 301 327 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Raymond Christopher C 15 May 2019 Nietzsche s Revaluation of Socrates In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates BRILL pp 837 683 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Reshotko Naomi 3 January 2013 Socratic eudaimonism In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 136 155 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Rudebusch George 2009 Socratic Love In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley doi 10 1002 9780470996218 ch11 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Segvic Heda 2006 No One Errs Willingly The Meaning of Socratic Intellectualism In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley doi 10 1002 9780470996218 ch10 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Schur David Yamato Lori 15 May 2019 Kierkegaard s Socratic Way of Writing In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates Brill Publishers pp 820 836 doi 10 1163 9789004396753 032 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Trizio Michele 15 May 2019 Socrates in Byzantium In Kyriakos N Demetriou ed Brill s Companion to the Reception of Socrates Brill Publishers pp 592 618 doi 10 1163 9789004396753 024 ISBN 978 90 04 39675 3 Vasiliou Iakovos 3 January 2013 Socratic irony In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 20 33 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Vlastos Gregory 1985 Socrates Disavowal of Knowledge The Philosophical Quarterly Oxford University Press OUP 35 138 1 31 doi 10 2307 2219545 ISSN 0031 8094 JSTOR 2219545 Vlastos Gregory 1991 Socrates Ironist and Moral Philosopher Cornell University Press ISBN 978 0 8014 9787 2 Waterfield Robin 3 January 2013 Quest for the historical Socrates In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 1 19 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 Wolfsdorf David 3 January 2013 Quest for the historical Socrates In Nicholas D Smith ed The Bloomsbury Companion to Socrates John Bussanich A amp C Black pp 34 67 ISBN 978 1 4411 1284 2 White Nicholas 2009 Socrates in Hegel In Sara Ahbel Rappe ed A Companion to Socrates Rachana Kamtekar Wiley pp 368 387 ISBN 978 1 4051 5458 1 Further readingBrun Jean 1978 Socrate sixth ed Presses universitaires de France pp 39 40 ISBN 978 2 13 035620 2 in French Benson Hugh 1992 Essays on the philosophy of Socrates New York Oxford University Press ISBN 978 0 19 506757 6 OCLC 23179683 Rudebusch George 2009 Socrates Chichester U K Malden MA Wiley Blackwell ISBN 978 1 4051 5085 9 OCLC 476311710 Taylor C C W 1998 Socrates Oxford University Press ISBN 978 0 19 287601 0 Taylor C C W 2019 Socrates A Very Short Introduction Oxford University Press ISBN 978 0 19 883598 1 Vlastos Gregory 1994 Socratic Studies Cambridge University Press ISBN 978 0 521 44735 5 External linksSocratesat Wikipedia s sister projects Media from Wikimedia Commons Quotations from Wikiquote Texts from Wikisource Data from Wikidata Socrates at the Indiana Philosophy Ontology Project The Dialogues of Plato at Project Gutenberg Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Socrates amp oldid 1054011186, wikipedia, wiki, book,

books

, library,

article

, read, download, free, free download, mp3, video, mp4, 3gp, jpg, jpeg, gif, png, picture, music, song, movie, book, game, games.