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About corrupting the rich, young men of Athens, Socrates argues that deliberate corruption is an illogical action.
Lysias XIX 1,2,3; Isaeus X 1; Isocrates XV 79; Aeschines II 24).
Socrates says he will not use sophistic language — carefully arranged ornate words and phrases — but will speak using the common idiom of the Greek language.
In light of that definition, Socrates defensively argues that he cannot be mistaken for a Sophist philosopher because Sophists are wise men, are thought to be wise by the people of Athens, and, thus, are highly paid for their teaching; whereas he (Socrates) lives in ten-thousand-fold poverty, and knows nothing noble and good (23c).
For his self-defence, Socrates first eliminates any claim that he is a wise man.
Socrates says to the court that these old accusations arise from years of gossip and prejudice against him; hence, are matters difficult to address.
He then embarrasses the accusing Orators, by reformulating their diffuse accusations against him into proper, legal form, that: "Socrates is committing an injustice, in that he inquires into things below the earth and in the sky; and makes the weaker argument the stronger; and teaches others to follow his example" (19b-c).
Socrates later clarifies that point of philosophy when he says that whatever wisdom he possesses comes from knowing that he knows nothing (23b, 29b).
In the course of the trial, Socrates imitates, parodies, and corrects the Orators, his accusers, and asks the jury to judge him by the truth of his statements, not by his oratorical skill (cf.
Hence why Socrates minutely queried everyone who appeared to be a wise person.
In that vein, he tested the minds of politicians, poets, and scholars, for wisdom; although he occasionally found genius, Socrates found no one who possessed wisdom; yet, each man was thought wise by the people, and each man thought himself wise; therefore, he (Socrates) was the better man, because he was aware that he was not wise.