What Are the First Two Sets of Accusations Made Against Socrates?

Topics: Plato, Delphi, Socrates Pages: 2 (531 words) Published: March 4, 2013
What are the first two sets of accusations made against Socrates?

From the knowledge obtained about Socrates, we can conclude he was not considered a favorable man amongst the people of Athens. He was a good man with an ancient reputation of fallacious wrongdoings. Socrates’ reputation and his chosen life path led to his unfortunate trial, in which he was accused of numerous accounts of misconduct.

The accusations made against Socrates are summarized in 19b, as “Socrates is a criminal and a busybody, investigating the things beneath the earth and in the heavens and making the weaker argument stronger and teaching others these same things.” He was deemed as a natural philosopher and as a sophist; if these accounts weren’t bad enough, he was also accused of corrupting the youth of Athens.

In response to these accusations, Socrates relates the story of Chaerephon. A tale in which Chaerephon asked the Oracle of Delphi if there was any man wiser than Socrates, the Pythia responded that there was no one wiser than he. Socrates was so baffled and could not wrap his head around what the Oracle had said but he did not denounce it, as Socrates says “for that is not possible for him.”(21b). He doubts the God and went about trying to prove the utterance wrong. While on his quest, he was especially inclined to question powerful people who had a reputation for wisdom. He started with politicians, then to great poets, and then to artisans and craftsmen. All failed to demonstrate their wisdom but Socrates did not fail to bring this to their attention and to those present. He was beginning to believe that the wisdom he professed was his awareness that he was not wise. Upon this realization, he had made a number of enemies in powerful positions. One can begin to understand why his presence wasn't always welcomed by the rich and famous of Athens. As personal resentments escalated, Socrates’ reputation deteriorated and plentiful prejudices against him arose....
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