Is Socrates Innocent or Guilty?

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Is Socrates Innocent or Guilty? Living in a democracy, everyone is exposed through television and other various forms of media everyday to numerous trials by jury. Usually they are rarely given a second thought, but every once in a while along comes a specific trial which captures the attention of the entire country. This goes the same for trials throughout centuries in our past. Although they did not have the same forms of media as in this, modern era, there were still specific trials in which everyone knew about. One trial that stands out is the one against the great philosopher Socrates. Accused of corrupting the youth, being an atheist, and believing in other gods, Socrates faced trial by jury. The early forms of democracy were not as sophisticated and complex as they are now. The outcome of the trial was that Socrates was found guilty and sentenced to be put to death by hemlock poisoning. The question is whether Socrates was truly guilty or just another person fallen to the early form of democracy of a people who were possibly jealous and afraid of Socrates. However, by understanding Socrates intentions, it is clear that he was in fact innocent of the above charges, and was wrongly accused and executed. Socrates was executed after a trial in which he was accused of corrupting the youths of Athens, and committing acts of impiety. These accusations were brought to the court by a small group of men. Meletus was the speaker representing the group of accusers, while Socrates defended himself. The jury of 501 Athenians voted to execute Socrates on these accusations, but this extreme outcome was not planned out (Stone 78). The initial object of the trial was to get Socrates out of Athens, and he would just move a... ... middle of paper ... ...There is one charge he hasn't really faced, that of making the weaker argument the stronger. That is he just questioned peoples arguments, no matter how strong they were compared to his own. In essence he made fools of powerful and knowledgeable people for sport. Perhaps this overshadowed aspect of the charges is true after all. Bibliography: Works Cited Brickhouse, Thomas C. Socrates On Trial. Princeton University Press, Princeton: 1989. Plato. Five Dialogues. Hackett, Indianapolis: 1981. Reeve, C. D. C. Socrates in the Apology: An Essay on Plato's Apology of Socrates. Hackett, Indianapolis: 1989. Stone, Isidor. F. The Trial of Socrates. Little Brown, Boston: 1988. Xenophon. Recollections of Socrates, and: Socrates' Defense Before the Jury. Collier Macmillan, New York: 1965.

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