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Socrates (c. 469 BC – 399 BC) was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary Aristophanes. Many would claim that Plato's dialogues are the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive from antiquity.

Through his portrayal in Plato's dialogues, Socrates has become renowned for his contribution to the field of ethics, and it is this Platonic Socrates who also lends his name to the concepts of Socratic irony and the Socratic method, or elenchus. ... more »

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  • ''Whenever, therefore, people are deceived and form opinions wide of the truth, it is clear that the error has slid into their minds through the medium of certain resemblances to that truth.''
    Socrates (469-399 B.C.), Greek philosopher. Quoted in Plato, Phaedrus, sct. 262.
  • ''I was afraid that by observing objects with my eyes and trying to comprehend them with each of my other senses I might blind my soul altogether.''
    Socrates (469-399 B.C.), Greek philosopher. quoted in Phaedo, sct. 98, Plato.
  • ''Every pleasure or pain has a sort of rivet with which it fastens the soul to the body and pins it down and makes it corporeal, accepting as true whatever the body certifies.''
    Socrates (469-399 B.C.), Greek philosopher. Quoted in Phaedo, sct. 81, Plato.
  • ''I only wish that ordinary people had an unlimited capacity for doing harm; then they might have an unlimited power for doing good.''
    Socrates (469-399 B.C.), Greek philosopher. Quoted in Plato, Crito, sect. 43.
  • ''Ordinary people seem not to realize that those who really apply themselves in the right way to philosophy are directly and of their own accord preparing themselves for dying and death.''
    Socrates (469-399 B.C.), Greek philosopher. Quoted in Plato, Phaedo, sect. 62.
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  • Katherine Hunter Katherine Hunter (1/5/2013 7:46:00 AM)

    Although thy pen was silent, mute,
    A sea of knowledge dire
    In thee the world of yore had seized
    Thy voice was Spirit's fire
    All wealth and ease of the world sublime
    Thy deeds were apt to disdain
    Therefore thy spouse, Xantippe
    Was tortured by a ceaseless pain.
    Many a foe of giant cloud
    Against thy knowledge stood.
    But gloom saw its doom in thee,
    With thee thy high manhood.

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