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Socrates 1 Socrates Name: Course Instructor: Date:
Socrates 2 Socrates In “The Apology”, Socrates differentiates between two sets of charges, those based on popular opinion and those referring to actual charges brought against him. The charge against Socrates based on popular opinion was an old one and is best captured in the following statement: “Socrates is an evil-doer, and a curios person who searches into things under the earth and in heaven, and he makes the worse appear the better cause; and teaches the aforesaid doctrine to others”. 1 Simply put, the charge against Socrates based on popular opinion was that Socrates was conducting research; coming up with false findings, which he claimed to be the truth, and then he taught these false concepts to others. The actual charges brought against Socrates by Meletus, the poet, and Anytus was that Socrates was guilty of not recognizing the gods that were being acknowledged by the state, and he also introduced people to new gods. The actual charge against Socrates also accused him of corrupting the youth. Socrates accusers proposed death penalty as a punishment for his crime. 2 Socrates differentiated between the two charges because the charge he was afraid of the most was the charged based on popular opinion. The reason Socrates was afraid of this charge was because it was based on hearsay and widespread, and he could not know all of his accusers. It could also be difficult for Socrates to defend himself of the charge referring to popular opinion because all of his accusers could not be present during the trial for him to answer them. On the contrary, the persons who had brought the actual charges against Socrates were present at the trial and this made it easy for Socrates to defend himself by answering against their 1 Thomas West G and Grace Starry West, Four texts on Socrates : Plato's Euthyphro, Apology, and Crito, and Aristophanes' Clouds ( Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1998), 65.

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