Socrates Accusers In The Apology

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Socrates faces many accusations in The Apology. The charges he faces fall into two types of categories: ones from his early years and more recent charges. One of the earliest charges against Socrates is that he is “a student of all things in the sky and below the earth, who makes the worse argument the stronger” (18b). Here, Socrates’ accusers are charging him with teaching people the wrong things as if they were the right, as well as studying things in which he has no business studying- namely questioning the world around and beyond him. Those presenting the charges are admitting that Socrates is a powerful and convincing speaker, but the things he teaches are blasphemous and he twists them in such a way as to make them seem right. Simply…show more content…
The men of Athens seem to fear many things. They fear being wrong and fear anything that strays from societal norms of the time. It is understandable where the accusers are coming from- one man is going against the entire city-state’s beliefs. However, their accusations come from a place of ignorance and inability to see beyond what they personally think is true. Socrates easily and convincingly defends himself against the charges thrown at him, which is compelling proof of his innocence. Firstly, he knocks down the old accusation of studying inappropriate topics by asking the jury, most of whom had witnessed him speaking at least once, to come forward if they have heard him conversing on such taboo topics (19d). Socrates has such confidence that he has never discussed these topics that he is willing to ask over 501 men to come forward if he is wrong- and not one does. Next, Socrates argues that one would not willingly make the youth “worse” (25d) because this leads to the creation of potentially harmful people. Socrates states in 25e that if he makes one of his associates wicked, he runs the risk of being harmed by that one person. No sane person, especially Socrates himself who constantly searches for wisdom and truth, would do this

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