The Critical Mistake In Ancient Athens, citizens put one of the most influential and clever men in history, Socrates, on trial and sentenced him to death. Why would the Athenians want to put this influential and perspicacious man on trial? Although Socrates believed he had made people feel ignorant and therefore angry with him, the Athenians convicted him because they believed his ideas, which challenged social norms, corrupted the youth, including Alcibiades and Critias.
Socrates believed he was on trial simply because he made people upset with his brilliant mind. He is seen as wise because people think he “possesses the wisdom” he sees “lacking in others,” (14). He never thinks he knows something, which in fact, he honestly doesn’t know.…show more content… However Athenians didn’t see it as supporting them but rather they believed he was corrupting them and would ruin the future of Athens and democracy. Meletus blamed Socrates for corrupting the youth as well as other charges including impiety. Some of the young men that followed him corrupted the court system by accepting bribes for an acquittal and allowing the criminal to come out as not guilty. (5) This proves the idea that the democratic system was unjust and corrupt, supporting Socrates’ theory of democracy. It is also shown that Socrates had corrupted the youth, teaching them the “wrong” thing based on social norms. There is a “Thinkery” which is for “clever brains only,” (12). This is where he would bring in the alleged corrupted youth and teach them his philosophy, like he did with his students Pheidippides and Strepsiades. He would teach them how to always win their case in court and have the correct arguments. He would also teach them astronomy, geometry, and geography. However, he would also teach them ideas that went against Athenian norms. He would persuade them that there were no gods and that the clouds and thunder are not created by Zeus but rather it is just a natural phenomenon. Even though Aristophanes was imitating Socrates, his main ideas were