A research on the issue of escape according to the argument of socrates and crito

If, under the circumstances that have just been pointed out, Socrates should escape from prison, it would be of no benefit either to him or to his friends. If he should go to one of the neighboring cities, such as Thebes or Megara, he would be regarded as an enemy and all of their patriotic citizens would look upon him as a subverter of the laws.

By refusing to escape, you will be taking the easier but not the better and manlier part, and, therefore, people will be ashamed not only of you but also of your friends, who they will maintain were lacking in the necessary courage to save you from an untimely death.

He is visited before dawn by his old friend Crito, who has made arrangements to smuggle Socrates out of prison to the safety of exile.

A research on the issue of escape according to the argument of socrates and crito

Then bursting into tears he turned away and went out. Socrates had spent his entire life in Athens. If he goes to neighboring cities, he will be looked upon by all honest citizens as an enemy. Crito then tells him to have no such fear, for there are persons who at no great cost are willing to save him and bring him out of prison. When we heard that, we were ashamed, and refrained our tears; and he walked about until, as he said, his legs began to fail, and then he lay on his back, according to the directions, and the man who gave him the poison now and then looked at his feet and legs; and after a while he pressed his foot hard and asked him if he could feel; and he said, no; and then his leg, and so upwards and upwards, and showed us that he was cold and stiff. It is this point that the dialog is intended to clarify. Socrates' reply to this argument is that he would in fact be harming the Laws, which are just. Nevertheless, Crito still insists that the opinion of the many is not something to be neglected entirely, for the simple reason that the many possess the power to put people to death, and to save one's own life is more important than anything else he can do. He has stated on different occasions that he will obey God rather than man, which means that he will not violate the demands of his own conscience in order to do what the state has ordered him to do. In the case of Socrates, there was ample evidence to indicate he had been condemned unjustly and that the law that demanded his execution was not a good one. We cannot be certain about what he would have done under these circumstances, but there is one important difference between Plato and Socrates at the time when the conversation with Crito took place: Socrates was seventy years old, while Plato was only a young man in his early thirties. Socrates tells him that it is not the opinion of the majority that is most important but rather the opinion of the ones who have an adequate understanding of the issue that is involved. Socrates accepted the former of these two views but rejected the latter. They could say that he has broken the covenants and agreements he made with them, not in haste or on the spur of the moment, but in times of leisure, without any deception or compulsion on their part.

Source Tarrant, Harold, ed. May I, or not? The calm and quiet manner with which Socrates accepts his fate astonishes his visitor, but it is only one more illustration of the extent to which Socrates has achieved control of his feelings and emotions. The court that had condemned him was not a competent court.

crito analysis essay

To return evil for evil may be in harmony with the morality of the many, but as he has indicated before, public opinion when not supported by good reasons is never a safe guide to follow. The circumstances were such that he might easily have done so, and his friends were urging him to do it.

what argument does crito give regarding socrates sons?

He has no right to bring children into the world and then fail to provide them with the nurture and education to which they are entitled.

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Lectures Notes on Plato's Crito