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to the Athenian mode of procedure, the next thing was to treat of the measure of the penalty. Socrates, however, spoke out with undaunted courage : were he to move for what he had deserved, he could only move for a public entertainment in the Prytaneum. He repeated the assurance that he could not on any account renounce his previous course of life. At length, yielding to the entreaties of his friends, he was willing to consent to a fine of thirty minæ, because he could pay this without owning himself to be guilty. It may be readily understood that to the majority of the judges such language in the accused could only appear in the light of incorrigible obstinacy and contempt for the judicial office ;' hence the penalty claimed by the accusers was awarded—a sentence of death.3
The sentence was received by Socrates with a composure corresponding with his previous conduct. He persisted in not in any way repenting of his conduct, frequently expressing before the judges his conviction, that for him death would be no misfortune. 4 The execution of the sentence being delayed
(4) His death.
1 The above is stated on the all the more readily a contrary authority of Plato's Apology, effect, if he thought such conin opposition to which the less duct imperative. Nietzsche's accurate assertion of Xeno- idea (Sokrates Bas. 1871, p. 17) phon, that he rejected any that Socrates, with full conpecuniary composition, and sciousness, carried through his that of Diog. ii. 41, çannot be condemnation to death, appears allowed to be of any weight. untenable for the same reasons
2 How distinctly Socrates as the above. foresaw this effect of his con- 3 According to Diog. ii. 42, it duct is unknown. It may have was carried by eighty more appeared probable to him; but votes than his condemnation. he may also have anticipated 4 Plato, Apol. 38, C.
pending the return of the sacred-ship from Delos,' he continued in prison thirty days, holding his accustomed intercourse with his friends, and retaining during the whole period his unclouded brightness of disposition. Flight from prison, for which his friends had made every preparation, was scorned as wrong and undignified. His last day was spent in quiet intellectual conversation, and when the evening came the hemlock draught was drunk with a strength of mind so unshaken, and a resignation so entire, that a feeling of wonder and admiration overcame the feeling of grief, even in his nearest relatives. Among the Athenians, too, no long time after his death, discontent with the troublesome preacher of morals is said to have given way before remorse, in consequence of which his accusers were visited with severe penalties ; 5 these statements, however,
| Mem. iv. 8,2; Plato, Phædo, put Socrates to death, and 58, A.
attacked his accusers, putting ? Phædo, 59, D.; Mem. 1. c. them to death without a judi3 See p. 77, 1. According to cial sentence. Suidas makes Plato, Crito urged him to flight. Méantos (Meletus) die by stonThe Epicurean Idomeneus, who ing. Plut. de Invid. c. 6, p. says it was Æschines (Diog. ii. 538, says that the slanderous 60; iii. 36) is not a trust- accusers of Socrates became so worthy authority.
hated at Athens that the citi. * Compare the Phædo, the zens would not light their fires, account in which appears to be or answer their questions, or true in the main. See 58, E.; bathe in the same water with 116, A.; Xen. Mem. iv. 8, 2. them, and that at last they Whether the statements in were driven in despair to hang Xen. Apol. 28; Diog. ii. 35; themselves. Diog. ii. 43, conf. Ælian, V. H. i. 16, are histori. vi. 9, says that the Athenians cal, is a moot point. Those in soon after, overcome with comStob. Floril. 5, 67, are certainly punction, condemned Meletus exaggerations.
to death, banished the other 5 Diodor, xiv. 37, says that accusers, and erected a brazen the people repented of having statue to Socrates, and that
B. The cause of this sentence of condemnation. (1) It was not the work of the Sophists.
are not to be trusted, and appear on the whole improbable.
The circumstances which brought about the death of Socrates are among the clearest facts of history. Nevertheless the greatest difference of opinion prevails as to the causes which led thereto and the justice of his condemnation. In former times it was
Anytus was forbidden to set the main point is, that neither foot in their city. Themist. Plato, nor Xenophon, nor the Or. xx. 239, says : The Athe- writer of Xenophon's Apology nians soon repented of this ever mention this occurrence, deed ; Meletus was punished, which they could not have Anytus fled, and was stoned at failed to regard with great Heraclea, where his grave may satisfaction. On the contrary, still be
Tertullian, five years after the death of Apologet. 14, states that the Socrates Xenophon thought it Athenians punished the ac- necessary to defend him against cusers of Socrates, and erected the attacks of his accusers, to him a golden statue in a while Æschines appealed to the temple. Aug. De Civ. Dei, viïi. sentence on Socrates without 3, reports that one of the ac- dreading the
very obvious cusers was slain by the people answer, that his accusers had and the other banished for met with their deserts. That life.
Isocrates is referring to this | This view, already expres- occurrence rather than to any sed by Forchammer (1. c. 66) Other (Tepl å vridbo. 19) is not and Grote, viii. 683, appears established, nor need the pasto be the correct one notwith- sage contain a reference to any standing Hermann's (1. c. 8, 11) event in particular. And lastly, arguments to the contrary. nothing can be made of the apoFor thongh it is possible that cryphal story coming from some political or personal opponents editor of Isocrates, to the effect of Anytus and his fellow-ac- that the Athenians, ashamed cusers may have turned against of having put Socrates to them their action against So- death, forbad any public mencrates, and so procured their tion of him, and that when condemnation, yet (1) the au- Euripides (who died seven thorities are by no means so years before Socrates) alluded ancient or so unimpeachable to him in the Palamedes, all the that we can depend upon them. audience burst into tears. It (2) They contradict one an- is only lost labour to suggest other in all their details, not to that these scenes took place at mention Diogenes’anachronism some later time, when the play respecting Lysippus. And (3) was performed.
thought quite natural to refer it to an accidental outburst of passion. Were Socrates the colourless ideal of virtue he was represented to be by those lacking a deeper insight into his position in history, it would indeed be inconceivable that any vested interests could have been sufficiently injured by him to warrant a serious attack. If then, he was nevertheless accused and condemned, what else can have been the cause but the lowest of motives—personal hatred ? Now who can have had so much reason for hatred as the Sophists, whose movements Socrates was so effective in thwarting, and who were otherwise supposed to be capable of any crime? Accordingly it must bave been at their instigation that Anytus and Meletus induced Aristophanes to write his play of the Clouds, and afterwards themselves brought Socrates to trial.
This was the general view of the learned in former times.) Nevertheless its erroneousness was already pointed out by Freret. He proved that Meletus was a child when the Clouds was acted, and that at a much later period Anytus was on good terms with Socrates ; that neither Anytus can have had anything to do with the Sophists—Plato always representing him as their inveterate enemy and despiser 3—nor Meletus with Aristophanes ; 4 and he showed, that no writer
| Reference to Brucker, i. 3 Meno, 92, A. 549, in preference to any Aristophanes often amuses others.
himself at the expense of the ? In the admirable treatise: poet Meletus, but, as has been Observations sur les causes et remarked, this Meletus was sur quelques Circonstances de la probably an older man than Condamnation de Socrate, in the accuser of Socrates. See the Mém. de l'Académie des Hermann, De Socr. Accus. 5. Inscript. i. 47, 6, 209.
of credit knows anything of the part taken by the Sophists, in the accusation of Socrates. Besides, the Sophists, who had little or no political influence in Athens, could never have procured the condemnation of Socrates. Least of all, would they have preferred against him charges which immediately recoiled on their own heads. These arguments of Fréret's, after long passing unnoticed, have latterly met with general reception. Opinions are otherwise still much divided, and it is an open question whether the condemnation of Socrates was a work of private revenge, or whether it resulted from more general motives; if the latter, whether these motives were political, or moral, or religious; and lastly, whether the sentence was, according to the popular view, a crying wrong, or whether it may admit of a partial justification. In one quarter even the length
Ælian (V. H. ii. 13), the Mém. de l'Acad. i. 47. 6, 1. It chief authority for the pre- was therefore unknown to the vious hypothesis, knows German writers of the last thing about a suborning of century, who for the most part Anytus by the Sophists.
follow the old view ; for in2 The political career of Da- stance, Meiners, Gesch. d. Wismon, who according to the use senschaft, ii. 476; Tiedemann, of the Greek language can be Geist d. spek. Phil. ii. 21. called a Sophist, establishes Others, such as Buhle, Gesch. nothing to the contrary.
d. Phil. i. 372; Tenneman, 3 Protagorashad beenindicted Gesch. d. Phil. ii. 40, confine for atheism before Socrates, and themselves to stating geneon the same plea Socrates was rally, that Socrates made many attacked by Aristophanes, who enemies by his zeal for monever spared any partizans of rality, without mentioning the sophistry.
Sophists. 4 The treatise of Fréret was 5 There are a few exceptions, written as early as 1736, but such as Heinsius, p. 26. not published till 1809, when 6 Forchhammer: Die Athener it appeared together with seve- und Socrates, die Gesetzlichen ral other of his writings. See und der Revolutionär.