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How did Socrates make money to eat?

As far as I know, Socrates charged no money for his teachings and had no money of his own, so how did he not starve?


  1. He was a beggar, generally loved by everyone, and so therefore was never hungry.
    Also he had nobles like Plato following him around.

  2. It’s unknown.
    The practice in Athens at the time was for Sophists and Debaters to teach rhetoric to the youth of the wealthy Athenian aristocracy for money. Being able to talk and debate was considered very important to be an Athenian statesman. However, despite gaining several of Athen’s youth as followers, Socrates is supposed to have not accepted money at all for his “questioning.”
    He did have a family, a wife and children at home, but his home life didn’t come up much in Plato’s Dialogues. She was young, it doesn’t sound like she would have had the money. He fought in the Peloponnesian War for Athens, and apparently was recognized for bravery, although this didn’t come up in his trial defense so he probably wasn’t getting any sort of support there.
    Socrates was old in the dialogues when he was doing his things. He must have been retired I guess.

  3. he was poor; thus, he only built a small house for good people.
    he was married; thus, he must have a job.


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