Introduction to PhilosophyNotesThis is not a substitute for coming to class Richard Lee
Philosophy 2003 C 001Copyright © 1999, Richard Lee Spring 1999

Socrates and Wisdom

Oracle: No man is wiser than Socrates. (P 8b)

Socrates tries to prove the oracle wrong.

He searches for someone wiser than he. (Politicians, poets, artisans) He finds others aren't as wise as they appear.

He concludes: He has a wisdom that they don't have:

Socrates: "I am better off than he is--for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows; I neither know nor think that I know. In this latter particular, then, I seem to have slightly the advantage of him." (P 9a)

Neither he nor they know anything (important), but they think they do and Socrates knows that he doesn't know.

Richard Lee,, last modified: 5 May 1999