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Calling Philosophers NamesOn the Origin of a Discipline$
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Christopher Moore

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691195056

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691195056.001.0001

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Socrates’s Prosecution as Philosophos

Socrates’s Prosecution as Philosophos

Did Socrates Exemplify the Philosophos?

(p.157) 6 Socrates’s Prosecution as Philosophos
Calling Philosophers Names

Christopher Moore

Princeton University Press

This chapter turns to a fifth-century BCE figure as yet unmentioned, but whose importance to the later understanding of philosophia cannot be underestimated: Socrates. Many scholars believe that Socrates' students inaugurated new thinking about philosophia; presumably Socrates' life, or at least his death, galvanized them to do so. This would be a central ingredient in the recipe for the redemptive story told by Heraclides, a grand-student of Socrates. In fact, at least Xenophon and Plato never or only rarely call Socrates philosophos. This chapter makes this observation in part by focusing on both authors' attitude toward Socrates' connection to Anaxagoras, considered by later historians to be the first to philosophize in Athens, and by focusing on Xenophon's hesitation to use the word philosophos with respect to Socrates.

Keywords:   Socrates, Xenophon, Plato, philosophos, Anaxagoras, philosophia

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