Socrates
(469-399 B.C.)

 Socrates 10-3/4" H
Bronze Colored Forton MG on Marble Base
$183 (less Internet discount of $11) = $172
(freight $14)
"If a rich man is proud of his wealth, he should not be praised until it is known how he employs it."  Socrates

"Individuality is strongly marked in the portrait of Socrates by anonymous hands. That wonderful ugliness, the snub nose, and the broad bearded face are surely those of the man himself, observed with a sympathetic humor but without a trace of flattery. Personally I cannot read one of Plato's Socratic dialogues without a thought of this astonishing sculptured head...." - William Gaunt



If you had been a citizen of Athens in the fifth century B.C. you would have frequently passed on the streets an awkward man with a squat figure, a balding head and a blunt upturned nose. His coarse frayed garment and his bare feet might have caused you to dismiss him as an aimless wretch. He was not to be pitied. He was Socrates, one of the greatest moral teachers who ever lived; a man who changed the course of human thought.

Born in the outskirts of Athens, he started out to follow his father's profession as a sculptor but he abandoned that pursuit to seek the truth through his own thinking. You would have called him eccentric but he was not abnormal. In his thirties he had been commended for bravery in battle and he was always sociable, mixing humor with wisdom at gatherings with his friends.

We know of his teachings principally through the writings of his pupils Plato and the historian Xenophon, for he himself did not set down his doctrines. He taught to a great extent through the perceptive questions which he raised. He felt that wisdom is virtue and that he who is wise is moderate in all things. He challenged much of the thinking of the time and he did not hesitate to expose wrong-doing in government. His courage in that matter created enemies among some of the politically powerful, three of whom indicted him on charges of corrupting the minds of the young. He refused to defend himself and he refused to flee. He was sentenced to death by the drinking of the poisonous hemlock. When the time came he drank the poison, sat conversing with his friend and died as he had lived -- with honor and courage. Plato described him as "the wisest, most just and best of all the men I have ever known."