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CHAP. thought to anything beyond immediate needs, he X.

proscribes every attempt to analyse moral and political motives, or to test their reasonableness or the reverse; whilst as a poet he thinks nothing of trifling with truth and good manners, provided the desired end is reached. He thus becomes entangled in the inconsistency of demanding back, and yet by one and the same act destroying, the old morality. That he committed this inconsistency cannot be denied. And what a proof of shortsightedness it was to attempt to charm back a form of culture which had been irretrievably lost! That he was conscious of this inconsistency cannot be believed. Hardly would a thoughtless scoffer--which is what some would make of him-have ventured upon the dangerous path of attacking Cleon. Hardly would Plato have brought him into the society of Socrates in the Symposium, putting into his mouth a speech full of spirited humour, had he seen in him only a despicable character. If, however, the attack upon Socrates is seriously meant, and Aristophanes really thought to discern in him a Sophist dangerous alike to religion and morality-with which character he clothes him in the Clouds—then the charges preferred at the trial were not a mere pretence, and something more than personal motives led to the condemnation of

Socrates. (3) Was he Do we ask further what those motives were ? All the victim that is known of the trial and the personal character of a political party? of the accusers only leaves us a choice between two

alternatives : either the attack on Socrates was



directed against his political creed in particular, or more generally against his whole mode of thought and teaching in respect to morals, religion, and politics. Both alternatives are somewhat alike, still they are not so alike that we can avoid distinguishing them.

A great deal may be said in favour of the view, that the attack on Socrates was in the first place set on foot in the interest of the democratic party. Amongst the accusers, Anytus is known as one of the leading democrats of that time. The judges, too, are described as men, who had been banished and had returned with Thrasybulus. We know, moreover, that one of the charges preferred against Socrates was, that he had educated Critias, the most unscrupulous and the most hated of the oligarchical party ;5 Æschines 6 tells the Athenians plainly: You have put to death the Sophist Socrates, because he was the teacher of Critias. Others, too, are found among the friends and pupils of Socrates, who must have been hated by the democrats because of their

| This is the view of Fréret, Princ. der Ethik. p. 44. Com1. c. p. 233, of Dresig in the pare, Baur, Socrates und Chrisdissertation De Socrate juste tus, Tüb. Zeitschrift, 1837, 3 damnato (Lips. 1738), of Sü- 128-144. vern (notes to Clouds, p. 86) of * See p. 194, 1. Ritter, Gesch. d. Phil. ii. 30, 4 Plato, Apol. 21, A. and of Forchhammer (Die Athe- 5 Xen. Mem. i. 2, 12; Plato ner und Socrates, p. 39). More Apol. 33, A. indefinite is Hermann, Plat. i, 6 Adv. Tim. 173. No great 35, and Wiggers, Socr. p. 123. importance can be attached to

? Hegel, Gesch. d. Phil. ii. 81; this authority, as the context Rötscher, p. 256, 268, with shows. Æschines is talking special reference to the Clouds as an orator, not as an historof Aristophanes ; Henning, ian.



aristocratical sympathies. Such were Charmides, and Xenophon, who was banished from Athens ? about the time of the trial of Socrates, perhaps even in connection therewith, because of his intimacy with Sparta and the Spartans' friend, Cyrus the younger. Lastly, one of the formal indictments is referred to as charging Socrates with speaking disparagingly of the democratic form of election by lot, and with teaching his audience to treat the poor with insolence, by so frequently quoting the words

Each prince of name or chief in arms approved,
He fired with praise, or with persuasion moved.

But if a clamorous vile plebeian rose,
Him with reproof he check’d, or tam'd with blows,5

| Charmides, the uncle of Neither Xenophon nor Plato Plato, one of the thirty, was, mention Theramenes among according to Xen. Hell. ii. 4, the pupils of Socrates. Neither 19, one of the ten commanders of them mentions an intervenat the Peiræus, and fell on tion of Socrates on his behalf, the same day with Critias in as Plato, Apol. 32, C. does in nflict with the exiled Athe- another case.

In the accusanians.

sation brought against the vic2 Forchhammer, p. 84: he tors at Arginusæ, it was Soalso mentions Theramenes, the crates who espoused their cause, supporter of the thirty tyrants, and Theramenes who by his inwho may have been a pupil of trigues brought about their Socrates without, as Forch- condemnation. Pseudoplut. hammer will have it, adopting Vit. Decrhet. iv. 3, tells a the political opinions of his similar and more credible story teacher. But Diodor., xiv. 5, of Socrates. Probably it was from whom the story comes, is first told of him and then a very uncertain authority. transferred to Socrates. For Diodorus combines with 3 Mem. i. 2, 9. it the very improbable story that 4 Ibid. i. 2, 58. Socrates tried to rescue Thera- 5 Iliad. ii. 188. Forchhammenes from the clutches of the mer, p. 52, detects a great deal thirty, and could only be dis- more in these suaded from this audacious at thinks that Socrates was here tempt by many entreaties. expressing his conviction of




Taking all these facts into account, there can be no CHẠP.

X. doubt that, in the trial of Socrates, the interests of the democratic party did come into play. Still these motives were not all. The indictment (4) He was

the victim by no means places the anti-republican sentiments of of more Socrates in the foreground. What is brought against general him is his rejection of the Gods of his country, and

(a) The his corruption of youth. Those Gods were, however, charges

were not

directed the necessity of an oligarchical stance, he enumerates not only against the constitution, and was using Critias but Alcibiades among political the words of Hesiod špyov 8 the anti-democratical pupils of element in ουδέν όνειδος (which the ac- Socrates; and he speaks of the teachcusers also took advantage of), political activity of Socrates ing only. as a plea for not delaying, but after the battle of Arginusæ for striking when the time for by remarking that the oliaction came. The real impor- garchs elected on the council tance of the quotation from board their brethren in politiHomer, he contends, must not cal sentiments. It is true the be sought in the verses quoted levity of Alcibiades made him by Xenophon, but in those dangerous to the democratic omitted by him (11. ii. 192–197, party, but in his own time he 203-205): the charge was not never passed for an oligarch, brought against Socrates for but for a democrat. See Xen. spreading anti-democratic sen- Mem. i. 2, 12; Thac. viii. 63, timents, which Xenophon alone 48 and 68. With regard to the mentions, but for promoting condemnation of the victors of the establishment of an oli- Arginusæ, Athens had then not garchical form of government. only partially, as Forchhammer This is, however, the very op- says, but altogether shaken off posite of historical criticism. the oligarchical constitution of If Forchhammer relies upon the Pisander. This may be gathered statements of Xenophon, how from Fréret's remark, l. c. p. can he at the same time assert 243, from the account of the that they are false in most im- trial (Xen. Hell. i. 7), as well portant points ?

And if on as from the distinct statement the other hand he wishes to of Plato (Apol. 32, C.: kal Strengthen these statements, ταύτα μεν ήν έτι δημοκρατουμένης how can he use them to up- Tîs Tónews); not to mention hold the view, by which he the fact that these generals condemns them ? He has, were decided democrats, and however, detected oligarchical hence could not have been tendencies elsewhere, where no elected by oligarchs. traces of them exist. For in- | Plato, Apol. 24, B. p.193, 4.

CHAP. not only the Gods of the republican party, but the X.

Gods of Athens. If in some few instances, as in the trial for the mutilation of the Hermæ, insult to the Gods was brought into connection with attacks on a republican constitution, the connection was neither a necessary one, nor was it named in the indictment of Socrates. Further, as regards the corruption of youth,' this charge was certainly supported by the plea that Socrates instilled into young men contempt for republican forms of government and aristocratic insolence, and also that he was the teacher of Critias. But the training of Alcibiades was also laid to his charge, who had injured the city by republican rather than by aristocratic opinions. A further count was, that he taught sons to despise their fathers, and said that no wrong or base action need

be shunned if only it be of advantage.3 (6) But Herefrom it would appear that not so much the extended

political character in the narrower sense of the term, as to its moral

the moral and religious character of his teaching was ligious

the subject of attack. The latter aspects exclusively bearings.

draw down the wrath of Aristophanes. After all the ancient and modern discussions as to the scope of the Clouds, it may be taken for established that the Socrates of this comedy is not only a representative -drawn with a poet's license-of a mode of thought

and re

1 Mem. i. 2, 9.

opinions. Since then, Droysen ? Xen. Mem. i. 2, 49; Apol. and Schnitzer, Forchhammer, 20 and 29.

p. 25, and Köchly, Akad. Vortr. 3 Mem. i. 2, 56.

i, have further gone into the * Rötscher (Aristophanes, p. question. 272) gives a review of previous

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