Socrates (469 – 399 BC) was an ancient Greek philosopher who is widely credited with laying the foundation for Western philosophy.
Perhaps his most important contribution to Western thought is dialectics (answering a question with a question) method of inquiry,
known as the Socratic Method. He applied this to the examination of key moral concepts such as Good and Justice. |
His reputation was such, that the Oracle of Delphi was asked if anyone was wiser than Socrates - to which the answer was no.
Socrates' public ridiculing of those in power led to a trial on corrupting the young. He was found guilty as charged, and sentenced to death by drinking a silver goblet of hemlock. Having agreed to live under Athen's laws, to have foregone this punishment would have been against his own philosophy, and he therefore complied with the sentence.