Notes on Characters from The Apology

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The Apology Major Characters

Socrates: This is the orator, and person who is on trial. He was a philosopher and inquired into peoples' lives, actions and habits. This annoyed the people of the city who eventually brought him to court on this charge. He speaks of how it is the gods' will, told by an oracle, that he philosophizes, and that he must do this no matter what. Therefore, he refuses to stop his duty, and is punished with the death sentence.

Meletus: Meletus is one of the people who attacked Socrates, and is more than willing to bring someone to court for any reason. He attacked Socrates on behalf of the poets. However, Socrates makes him look like a fool in court as he shows the jury that Meletus keeps contradicting himself and has no basis for his attacks.

Anytus: Anytus joined Meletus in attacking Socrates. He attacked him on behalf of the professionals. Without the votes earned by Anytus and Lycon, Meletus would have never won the trial. However, Socrates believes that he would be found guilty because of the general public's negative opinion of him, and not because of these peoples' attacks.

Lycon: Lycon joined Meletus in attacking Socrates. He attacked him on behalf of the orators. Without the votes earned by Anytus and Lycon, Meletus would have never won the trial.

Minor Characters

Gorgias of Liontini: He was a teacher of rhetoric. He resembled the sophists in his manners of traveling, public demonstrations of art, and charging fees for private lessons, and thus Socrates refers to him as a teacher.

Prodicus of Ceos: Prodicus was an expert in languages. Socrates took a course with him, and associated with him. In the context of the book, Socrates referred to him as a great teacher.

Hippias of Elis: A polymath, he was also referred to by Socrates as an influential teacher.

Callias: Callias inherited a huge fortune from his father, Hipponicus, and spent it all on sophists' fees. He claimed Evenus of Paros to be the best philosopher and teacher of humans, and said that he would send his two sons to him for education.

Hipponicus: The father of Callias.

Evenus of Paros: A sophist, referred to as the best teacher by Callias. He charged people 500 Drachmae.

Chaerophon: One of Socrates' friends from childhood. He went to the Delphi and asked him who the wisest person was, and the Delphi said that it was Socrates.

Delphi: An oracle.

Son of Thetis: One of the heroes that died at Troy. Socrates uses him as an example to show that death is not to be feared, and is not the greatest evil of all. He knew that once he killed Hector he would die, however he still killed him in order to avenge his friend, Patroclus.

Hector: The person the son of Thetis wants to kill in order to avenge his friend, Patroclus.

Patroclus: The person the son of Thetis wanted to avenge. The son of Thetis was ready to die to avenge this person, instead of live in dishonor.

Antiochis: A tribe that was ruling at the time Socrates was serving on the Council. Members of the tribe were selected for duty by lot, and each tribe served as president for one month. This tribe wanted to try people en bloc, however this was illegal and Socrates opposed it.

Aristophones: A famous playwright and philosopher who wrote a play, The Clouds, criticizing Socrates, and depicting him as a person who thought he was above everybody else, and walked on clouds.

Plato: A student of Socrates who became a famous philosopher, and author of this book. He, and his three friends, Crito, Critobolus, and Apollodorus offered 3000 Drachmae to meet Socrates' punishment.

Crito: One of Socrates' friends, who, along with three other friends, offered money to help Socrates pay the fine instead of being executed.

Critobolus: One of Socrates' friends, who offered money to help Socrates pay the fine as punishment, instead of being executed.

Apollodorus: One of Socrates' friends, who offered money to help Socrates pay the fine as punishment, instead of being executed.

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