Discussion Forum

What were Socrates thoughts during his trial?

Socrates was charged by the following:
(1) corrupting the youth,
(2) inventing “new gods”
(3) not believing in the old ones.
What were his thoughts during this trial, how did he defend himself.

If you can find quotes to back up your reasoning it would be helpful.
This would be helpful cause I want to write an essay on this.

7 Comments

  • people believed he was a sophist and thought that he was corrupting the young, “You have been corrupting the young.” (platos apology- 3b) this was then taken to the courts. “you are going to the court” said zeus

  • Socrates defended himself when brought to trial by stating that clear knowledge of the truth is essential for the correct conduct of life. Action, he said, equals knowledge. Virtue can be taught because correct action involves thought. He implied that rulers should be men who know how to rule, not necessarily those who have been elected. He appeared dangerous to Athenian democracy, but what he defended were the foundations of that democracy.

    Socrates introduced the idea of universal definitions. He believed that although individual people vary and are constructed differently, the definitions of how they are similar or vary remain constant.

    He believed that correct method of discovering the common characteristics was by inductive means, i.e., by reasoning from particular facts to a general idea. This process took the form of dialectic (philosophic) conversations, which became know as the Socratic method. This method tended to expose people’s ignorance. It showed that many things they assumed to be true were false.

    Socrates made a toast to the gods and drank the poison hemlock. He met death with the same calm and self control with which he had lived.

  • Interesting question. Despite Socrates was charged of corrupting the youth, his pupils has reverence on him. This is because he was a man as well as a philosopher. He had at great risk saved the life of Alcibiades in battle. He could drink a gentlemen without fear and without excess,. But no doubt they liked best in him the modesty of his wisdom.

    During his trial, Socrates thought and had in mind that he has his own religious faith> He believed in one God and hoped in his modest way that death would not quite destroy him. But he knew that a lasting moral code could not be based upon so uncertainty a theology. If one could build a system of morality absolutely independent of religious doctrine, as valid as for the atheists as for the piethist, then theologies might come and go without loosening the moral cement that makes of wilful individuals the peaceful citizens of a community.

    Perhaps during his imprisonment he thought it was time for him to die, and he could never again die so usefully. Said Socrates: ” Be of good cheer, ” he told his sorrowing friends, ” and say that you are burying my body only.”

    Thanks for asking. Have a great day!

  • he defended himself by pointing to the obvious illegalities and illogical circumstance of charging him with anything. he defended himself by saying that his accusers should be the ones on trial. also, when he realized that the jury would let him off easy (they told him so–even asked him to give them a fair penalty, or fine), Socrates, being his usual self, decided to offend everyone there by saying that they should give him something.
    anyway, they ended up sentencing him to death, which he had several opportunities to escape and didn’t, calling even more attention to the fact that he wanted to be convicted and sentenced to death. That way, he will be remembered as a martyr and his prediction that the leaders of Athens will all fall will come true, both of which happened. Even today, Socrates is known as the marytr philosopher who, more than all others after him, exemplifies a philosopher living the philosopher’s life.

    hope this helped.

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