Socrates, the student of Plato, was a philosopher. He believed knowledge was alive and sought to perfect it through repeated inquiry. He held a particular view about justice while asserting that he does not fully understand the nature of justice. The following 5 facts about Socrates provide a quick primer on Socrates’ life. Learn more about this interesting thinker by clicking the links below. You may be surprised by one of them.
Socrates was a philosopher
Socrates was an ancient Greek philosopher and teacher who made a considerable contribution to Western systems of philosophy and logic. He focused his work on the importance of living well, and believed that we have a moral duty to examine our fellow citizens. According to the historian Porphyrius, a young Socrates had sullied his father’s reputation by disobeying orders to kill his parents, and this was a serious mistake.
Socrates was known to have a fondness for conversation, and he was relentless in his pursuit of knowledge. Unlike pre-Socratic philosophers, he was more interested in observing human behavior than natural phenomena. In his dialogue, The Phaedrus, he tells us about his interests and his passion for learning. He is also a master of logical argumentation. But what sets Socrates apart from his contemporaries?
Socrates’s first wife, Myrto, gave birth to two sons, Sophroniscus and Menexenus, and he married two women at the same time. He was open about his physical attraction to young men, but this was subordinated to his desire to better their souls. As a result, Socrates is often referred to as the father of the “Sophist of the People”.
He was a student of Plato
Socrates was a student of Platone, and so it is no surprise that he is often credited with inventing the method of dialectic. While many people associate dialectic with Plato, the term is actually Platonic. Dialektai is a Greek word meaning “to converse and discuss”. In his Gorgias dialogue, Socrates distinguishes dialectic from rhetorical exposition by stating that he favors short questions and answers over long speeches.
Socrates was born in 469 B.C.E. to a stonemason named Sophroniscus and a midwife named Phaenarete. His family was not wealthy, and Socrates could not claim a noble birth like Plato did. He grew up in the political district of Alopece, and at age 18 began performing typical Athenian male duties. He even joined the assembly, which Plato had founded in 427 B.C.E.
The first of these arguments, that a god can be corrupted, is a myth. Socrates’ benevolent conception of the divine makes most forms of sacrifice pointless. His argument that he is influenced by his daimon essentially argues that the daimon is a demon undermines his innocence and makes him a fraud. He also rejects the idea that a god is necessary for piety.
He was unattractive
Aristotle and Plato don’t hate Socrates. Both men believe that argument is more effective than writing, so Socrates spent most of his adult life in marketplaces and public areas of Athens. Socrates was short, chubby, and had a malformed face. Nonetheless, he was admired and popular among his fellow citizens because of his wit and obedient behavior.
In the same manner, Socrates had a higher opinion of women than many of his male companions. Socrates often compared his work to midwifery, likening it to birthing a child. He also cited foreign women as teachers. Socrates claimed to have learned rhetoric from Aspasia of Miletus, and erotics from Diotima of Mantinea. Socrates was unconventional in his marriage, as females in Athens were usually uneducated and given in marriage by their fathers.
Socrates’ parents were afraid of him. They gave him a choice between being banished or dying. His parents were frightened and wanted to avoid him, and they chose death. The punishment was death. The parents were blaming Socrates for their sons’ lack of respect for their elders, but Socrates gave them advice on how to treat the elders. Alexias, Xenophon, and Plato, among others, changed their attitude towards the elders. Alexias and Xenophon were influenced by their father and mother’s advice.
He believed knowledge was a living thing
Socrates was a famous philosopher, and his Apology is an important part of the introduction to philosophy. He wrote that knowledge is alive, and that we can’t judge the state of a living thing by its appearance. In addition, the jury may have failed to distinguish between philosophy and sophistry. Regardless, the jury likely did not distinguish between the two in their deliberations. Here are three examples of his writings.
Socrates’ tribe and deme was Antiochis, south-southeast of Attica. Socrates’ mother was Sophroniscus, a stoneworker. When he was five days old, Sophroniscus carried him around the hearth, calling him Socrates. He was named on the tenth day, and was presented to his phratry at that time. Sophroniscus took the responsibility of socializing Socrates.
Socrates’ philosophy of knowledge focuses on the big question of good and evil. He believed that knowledge is a living thing and, by asking enough people, we will discover the truth. But he was also accused of corrupting the minds of the young. He was eventually sentenced to death by drinking hemlock. In the process, he was condemned to death. The death sentence he received was not due to his ignorance but to his death.
He drank a hemlock poison mixture
The hemlock poison was used in the execution of Socrates. The plant, a member of the parsley family, contains g-coniceine and coniine, which are both responsible for respiratory paralysis and dermatotoxicity, respectively. In addition to paralysis, hemlock poisoning may also cause renal failure, dermatitis, and rhabdomyolysis.
Socrates’ death sentence carries a long and illustrious history. He was convicted of public speaking against the state and his beliefs about the human condition. He was also forced to deny his ideas publicly before being executed. However, the punishment he chose for his crime was the same as the sentence given to Jesus – death by poison. According to Socrates’ attorney, the murderer had been so disgusted with Socrates’ speech, he decided to kill himself with a hemlock poison mixture.
Plato’s story of Socrates’ death has been widely accepted as an example of the effects of hemlock poisoning. In fact, the plant is common in Tennessee pastures and is just as deadly today. It also poisons cattle and poultry. In rare instances, though, the plant can be fatal. There are several reasons why the poison is so dangerous, but it is not unheard of.
He was a member of the Prytaneum
The Prytaneum in Athens was a special place reserved for Olympic heroes. Socrates, in the midst of a trial, offered to be a member there and eat for free in exchange for the honor. He was condemned to death by a vote of 280 to 221, but was allowed to escape for a month. It was a remarkable show of courage, and it prompted a lot of controversy.
Socrates was a member of the “prytaneum.” This job was not thought of as difficult and required little physical effort. Keeping the “prytaneum” in tip-top shape would allow Socrates to add new knowledge, which he could then share with the rest of the city. This is an example of Socrates using his position in the Prytaneum as a metaphor for the human soul.
The Prytaneum provided an outlet for Socrates to express his ideas about democracy. Socrates openly espoused his views, which were often anti-democratic. Plato reaffirmed these ideas in The Republic, his ‘philosopher-king’ ethos. Socrates is often referred to as the father of Western Philosophy, and his influence is a part of the cultural understanding of western civilization.
He was a loyal citizen of Athens
Socrates was a loyal citizen of the Athens polis. He was a citizen of his fatherland and had a responsibility to uphold its laws, even when they contradicted his own. Socrates’ adherence to the law was an excessive loyalty to the city. As a result, the Apology and Crito conclude that Socrates’ duty to the city is to make it a better place for the citizens.
Socrates’ interest in the limits of human knowledge led him to balk at the Oracle’s declaration that he was the wisest man in Athens. But he was well aware of his own ignorance, and he avoided political involvement. He had friends from all sides of the power struggles. In 406 B.C., he served in the city’s assembly. This was an example of ancient Greek democracy.
Although Socrates was a loyal citizen of the city, he was also critical of its goals. He actively questioned the goals of his fellow citizens and the goals of Athens. In fact, Socrates’ rants often made his fellow citizens angry, and it is a testament to his integrity. In 399 BCE, he was finally slapped by the Athenians.