The Wisest Man In Plato's The Apology Of Socrates

1274 Words6 Pages
In The Apology of Socrates by Plato, Socrates presents to a jury the defense of his way of life. One of the strongest argument Socrates gives for his defense, relies on that of the Oracle who says “no one is wiser than Socrates” (Apology 21a). Since Socrates recognizes his ignorance and takes it upon himself to find someone wiser than him; this makes him the wisest man. In this essay, I will argue that his argument is valid because those who claimed to be wise, are truly ignorant in the eyes of the gods. In Apology, Socrates argues that he is not the wisest man. He then sets out on a mission to find someone wiser than him and prove the oracle wrong. Wisdom is defined by Aristotle as “knowledge of certain principles and causes” (Thales of…show more content…
His last request was for the ones who convicted him to punish his sons, if they ever grow up putting their own interest of wealth instead of their goodness of other’s including their virtue. This request goes hand in hand with Socrates mission in life from the Gods, which was “to examine his fellow citizens and persuade them that the most important good for a human being was the health of the soul” (Socrates II. Priority Care of the Soul). Meaning that, living as a law-bidding citizen and respecting society made you a better person, which is healthy for the soul. By taking it upon himself to take care of the City of Athens, Socrates wanted to make Athenians “…law-abiding, more efficacious in their chosen work, more prudent or moderate, and more self-controlled” (Xenophon 2. Xenophon’s Socrates). By doing so, Socrates portrays the city as a horse who is in need of guidance to water, during his trial in court. Since the city is in need of someone to guide it to “water”, Socrates infers as himself as the guidance Athens needs. By using the metaphor of leading a horse to water Socrates shows that he was not corrupting the youth but instead being an attribution to the city of Athens. Also, by asking the jury to punish his sons if they lose their virtue he is further implying the ethics in which he lives by. Furthermore, since Socrates was law-biding and moderate, he was following the mission the Gods gave him of guiding the city of Athens, making him the wisest among men. This is because as the definition of wisdom sates, a man has to have good judgment and certain principles to acquire knowledge; furthermore strengthening Socrates
Open Document