Last Days Of Socrates Essay

Last Days Of Socrates Essay

Length: 2263 words (6.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Last Days of Socrates


Plato. The Last Days of Socrates. London: Penguin Books Ltd., 1993

Imagine the time just after the death of Socrates. The people of Athens were filled with questions about the final judgment of this well-known, long-time citizen of Athens. Socrates was accused at the end of his life of impiety and corruption of youth. Rumors, prejudices, and questions flew about the town. Plato experienced this situation when Socrates, his teacher and friend, accepted the ruling of death from an Athenian court. In The Last Days of Socrates, Plato uses Socrates’ own voice to explain the reasons that Socrates, though innocent in Plato’s view, was convicted and why Socrates did not escape his punishment as offered by the court. The writings, “Euthyphro,” “The Apology,” “Crito,” and “Pheado” not only helped the general population of Athens and the friends and followers of Socrates understand his death, but also showed Socrates in the best possible light. They are connected by their common theme of a memoriam to Socrates and the discussion of virtues. By studying these texts, researchers can see into the culture of Athens, but most important are the discussions about relationships in the book. The relationships between the religion and state and individual and society have impacted the past and are still concerns that are with us today.

While Plato is writing to prove Socrates a good or respectable person, he allows the modern reader a glimpse into Athenian culture. We see that religion is held in very high regard and failing to serve a religion is punishable by death, no matter what one’s social or political stature. In “Euthyphro,” the reader learns that sometimes an Interpreter is consulted when dealing with certain criminal behavior. Also, we realize that the Athenians regard a son accusing a father of a crime, no matter what the charge, as very odd and of great annoyance to the family. I believe this is still true today. Family loyalty is considered, in some cases, more important than the laws of the country. One example is the crime families that operate in the country. These families are known to be patriotic, but their patriotism stops when family and money are involved. In “The Apology,” the reader sees some of the Athenian court system in action. Researchers can guess that prosecution and defense are allowed only certain amounts of...


... middle of paper ...


...ribed happened and were recorded. The element of a man, falsely accused, dying for his beliefs is a crossover into an idea understood by all cultures. Even the way the works are presented, in the form of dialogue, make them stand out to history. Perhaps the first time in history are such deep thoughts written about and discussed in such a way. This also speaks of the times of the philosophers. If the inhabitants of Athens had time to think about such deep thoughts as “What is holiness?” they must have lead lives of ease compared with those of earlier people. These certain thoughts might be precedents in history, just because the Athenians cherished thought, rhetoric, and some had the time and willingness to practice these pursuits. Civilizations that followed the Greeks often imitated them. The Romans based many of their values, rules of citizenship, and even religion on the Greek system. Men and women of the Enlightenment could have read the same dialogues that we read today. Why would anyone continue to read these stories? I believe it is the dialogues discussion of individual verses state and state verses religion. These are the truly enduring issues that we will always face.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Last Days Of Socrates Essay

- The Last Days of Socrates Plato. The Last Days of Socrates. London: Penguin Books Ltd., 1993 Imagine the time just after the death of Socrates. The people of Athens were filled with questions about the final judgment of this well-known, long-time citizen of Athens. Socrates was accused at the end of his life of impiety and corruption of youth. Rumors, prejudices, and questions flew about the town. Plato experienced this situation when Socrates, his teacher and friend, accepted the ruling of death from an Athenian court....   [tags: Plato Socrates Philosophy Essays]

Powerful Essays
2263 words (6.5 pages)

Analysis Of ' Phaedo ' And ' The Last Days Of Socrates ' Essay

- Given what Socrates states in the Phaedo through his arguments about the afterlife and the definition of death, I argue, that he would he say, that we are alive when we are no longer in our body. This paper will argue that an individual is not only alive after death, but that we are most alive when we are not in the body, through an outline of premises picked from the book Phaedo, in The Last Days of Socrates by Plato. Socrates defines death as the separation of body and the soul through his dialogue with Simmias, “Is it simply the release of the soul from the body....   [tags: Life, Soul, Death, Plato]

Powerful Essays
1130 words (3.2 pages)

Essay about Recounting the Last Days of Socrates in Crito

- Recounting the Last Days of Socrates in Crito In the Last Days of Socrates the dialogue “Crito” recounts Socrates last days before his execution. Socrates had been accused of corrupting the youth and not worshipping the Gods of the state. During his trial he denied all accusations and attempted to defend himself by proving his innocence using reason . He was judged to be guilty and given a death sentence. His long time friend Crito proposes to Socrates a plan to escape from his death sentence in prison....   [tags: Crito Socrates Greek Philosophy Essays]

Powerful Essays
1378 words (3.9 pages)

Plato’s Crito: The Last Days of Socrates Essay

- As Socrates awaits his upcoming execution; he is visited before dawn by a close old friend Crito. Crito has made arrangements to help Socrates escape from prison. Socrates is grateful to his old friend for his willing to help aide him in the escape. However, Socrates is quite willing to await his execution. Crito tries to change Socrates mind about escaping by presenting him with several arguments. The first is that if Socrates choices to stay, his death will reflect poorly on Crito. The people will think that Crito did nothing to save his friend....   [tags: Crito, Socrates Execution]

Powerful Essays
1130 words (3.2 pages)

Comparison of Plato's The Last Days of Socrates and Hesse's Siddhartha Essay

- Comparison of Plato's The Last Days of Socrates and Hesse's Siddhartha     The Last Days of Socrates and Siddhartha are sources that reveal information about religious or philosophical ideas in the cultures that they focus on. While vast differences exist between the Greek and Indian values that shape their philosophies, they make similar assumptions as they attempt to make sense of the world. Understanding the dichotomous relationship of the soul and the body is integral to grasping the similarities and differences between the classical Greek and Indian paths because the way in which these concepts are understood defines the very nature of truth....   [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]

Powerful Essays
1703 words (4.9 pages)

Why Socrates Is Not Guilty Of Treason Essay

- Why Socrates is not Guilty of Treason O men of Athens. After we have heard the accusers, whom said that Socrates corrupts the youth by criticising democracy and does not believe in gods, and makes the worse appear the better cause. (Apology, Plato) I beg you to grant me a favor, please listen to a few words from me before making this decision. Socrates and I grew up alongside the Athenian democracy, and experienced her vicissitudes in the past seventy years....   [tags: Plato, Socrates, Ancient Greece]

Powerful Essays
1008 words (2.9 pages)

Socrates' Last Error Essay

- Socrates' Last Error In the dialogue, Crito, Socrates justified his decision to accept his death penalty. His decision was praised as principled and just. However, such a view was one of the greatest myths in the history of philosophy. Contrary to the accepted ideas, I wish to show that Socrates’ argument was erroneous, the crucial error being his failure to distinguish between substantial and procedural justice. In fact, the whole of the Crito refers to some deeper problems of the philosophy of law and morality....   [tags: Philosophy Papers]

Powerful Essays
3188 words (9.1 pages)

The Last Day Of Socrates Essay

- Defining the “good life” is a question that has been sought after for centuries; from among the first recorded pieces of writing, the Epic of Gilgamesh, on to the voice of Socrates in his final days, to a Shakespearean depiction of characters meeting their demise in King Lear and finally to the modern era. We can look back and see that this question has been answered and that those answers are all divergent as they develop from one’s own personal views. Platos’ The Last Day of Socrates gives us a glimpse into the final chapter of Socrates’ life....   [tags: Epic of Gilgamesh, Epic poetry]

Powerful Essays
925 words (2.6 pages)

Socrates Essay examples

- In Crito, Plato recounts the last days of Socrates, immediately before his execution was to take place in Athens. In the dialogue, Socrates’ pupil, Crito, proposes that Socrates escape from prison. Socrates considers this proposal, trying to decide whether escaping would be “just” and “morally justified.” Eventually, Socrates concludes that the act is considered “unjust” and “morally unjustified.” Socrates then decides to accept his fate and proceeded with his execution. Socrates was a man who was in pursuit of the truth (Durant)....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Powerful Essays
1117 words (3.2 pages)

Socrates Essays

- Socrates Philosophy was both serious and dangerous, Socrates chose to ignore both. Ignoring the first made him one of the most engaging of all philosophers, ignoring the second was to cost him his life. He was born in a middle class home in Athens, in 470 BCE. His parents were Phaenarete and Sophroniscus. His mother had a reputation for her patient and intuitive skill in delivering babies in and around the neighborhood. The latter, his father was a craftsman, stonecutter by trade. As a young boy, Socrates was teased in school about his appearance, and often would prey to the Gods to make him beautiful both inside as well as outside....   [tags: essays research papers]

Powerful Essays
3023 words (8.6 pages)