Learning Exercise

The Trial of Socrates, 399 B.C. E.

Socrates was one of the Ancient World's most famous philosophers. This site attempts to unravel the controversy surrounding the Trail of Scorates by clarifying the major issues debated in this case.
Course: Western Civilization

This is a site for law students. It includes notes about important constitutional issues, links to Supreme Court... see more


Instructions: Once on the site "Exploring Constitutional Law," scroll to the bottom of the page. Click "Famous Trials." Click "The Trial of Socrates." Read: Socrates, Plato and Socrates, The Three Accusers, Greek Criminal Procedure, Plato's Apology, Xenophon's Apology, and Aristophanes Clouds. Write a 5-7 page paper answering the following questions: 1. What do we know about Socrates? 2. What was the relationship between Plato and Socrates? 3. What were the legal accusations against Socrates and who leveled the charges? 4. Describe the Greek Criminal Procedure. 5. Summarize the apologies of Plato and Xenophon and Aristophanes Clouds. 6. What was the basis for Socrates conviction? 7. Did Socrates get a fair trail? 8. What was Socrates ultimate fate?

Technical Notes





Ancient Greece Philosophy

Learning Objectives

To acquaint students with the use of primary sources to interpret history. To acquaint students with the key legal issues in the conflict between the philospher Socrates and Democratic Athens.