The Unknown Socrates

Book Details

Author  Bernhard Huss
Publisher  Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers
Publication Date   September 1, 2002
ISBN  0865164983
Pages  304

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Socrates (469 399 B.C.) is one of history's most enigmatic and intriguing figures. He is often considered the father of Western philosophy, yet the four most famous accounts we have of him present a contradictory, confusing picture.

Just who was Socrates? Was he Plato's brilliant philosopher, at times confounding and infuriating, morally serious and yet ironic; the ever-worldly man, sometime mystic, and uncommon martyr? Or did Plato conflate Socrates' views with his own startling genius, as Aristotle suggests? Was Socrates instead the less impressive, more mundane man whose commonsense impressed the laconic Xenophon? Or could Socrates have been the charlatan, the long-winded phony of Aristophanes' Clouds?

The Socratic works included in this volume add intriguing dimensions to the portrait of Socrates. Diogenes Laertius' Life of Socrates emphasizes the philosopher's deep ethical nature and his extraordinary personality; Libanius' Apology of Socrates is based on sources now lost to us; Maximus of Tyre 's Whether Socrates Did the Right Thing When He Did Not Defend Himself makes the startling claim (against Plato and Xenophon) that Socrates never actually spoke at his own trial; from Apuleius' On the God of Socrates we hear at length of Socrates' infamous daimonion: the 'divine sign' only mentioned elsewhere. In short, these four texts add new wrinkles to the already enigmatic historical figure of Socrates.

Special Features

The Unknown Socrates will appeal to philosophers and historians alike, as well as to those interested in the history of ideas. This edition includes

-A general introduction
-An introduction to each of the four ancient authors and their works -An English translation of each of the texts, with selective notes -The original Latin or Greek text of each work -A selected bibliography for each work

Also available:

Smell of Sweat: Greek Athletics, Olympics, and Culture - ISBN 086516553X
The Meaning of Helen: In Search of an Ancient Icon - ISBN 0865165106

For over 30 years Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers has produced the highest quality Latin and ancient Greek books. From Dr. Seuss books in Latin to Plato's Apology, Bolchazy-Carducci's titles help readers learn about ancient Rome and Greece; the Latin and ancient Greek languages are alive and well with titles like Cicero's De Amicitia and Kaegi's Greek Grammar. We also feature a line of contemporary eastern European and WWII books.

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