miércoles, 8 de noviembre de 2017

Plato - Crito (English version)

After the trial of Socrates, Crito appears in his friend's cell in order to help him escape. As expected, the two friends have a conversation about justice and its ways of operating. Is there justice in the trial that has just been given to Socrates? In my opinion dear readers, no; nevertheless, the philosopher was condemned. Although his enemies could condemn him, here we see how his friends who supported him until the end, continue with him surely to thank him for everything the philosopher has done for them.


- Socrates
- Crito

Bad news

Critón arrives at the cell of Sócrates that is surprised to see him, since it was very early and in addition that the guard has let him go in. What happened was that Crito had already met with the guard with whom he had no problem.

His friend informs him that the ship of Delos is about to arrive, which would mean that the next day Socrates would be condemned to drink the hemlock.

Socrates is not worried about this saying that in a dream, a beautiful and slender woman told him that "In three days you will arrive at the fertile Ptía." Crito recognizes it as an unusual dream.


Critón expresses his concern for Socrates because in the first place, he would lose a great friend. Second, because he would feel bad about not helping a friend when he could have done it; especially when the money gets in the way, but Crito was willing to release it. Furthermore, it would be very difficult for people to believe that Socrates himself has refused to receive help. Socrates tells him that he should not worry about the opinion of the vulgar, but rather the opinion of those who know about such matters.

Critón's real reason for being there is to propitiate the escape of the philosopher the following night, since later it would be impossible. Socrates refuses to put aside his decision and insists on serving his sentence.

Critón says that many agree to be released and that they are willing to contribute anything to free it. In addition, he adds that by continuing in this attitude he will leave his children orphans and will not be able to teach them anything. Socrates returns with the same argument of a moment ago (the opinion of the vulgar does not matter, but matters of the experts).

Justice first of all

After the reasons of Crito, the two friends propose to analyze if fleeing from prison would be a fair action.

First of all they establish:
  • Never should injustice be committed
  • Never return injustice with injustice
  • It is never legitimate to do something wrong to someone

Socrates confesses that Crito has followed these steps all his life and still believes in them. Here it is established that to flee from prison would be to return injustice with injustice. Socrates describes what would happen if the Republic and the laws saw them escape. Indeed, Socrates would be ungrateful, since the laws made his father educate him, made his parents marry and conceive him. In this way, to flee would be to commit injustice with the laws. Laws that have formed Socrates and have made him what he is now.

In addition, Socrates' friends would be in great danger in helping him flee. As much danger as he himself because if he went to Thebes, Socrates would be regarded as a suspect and a breaker of laws. On the other hand, how could Socrates talk about obeying laws and achieving virtue if he breaks them too?

In this case, if Socrates dies, it would not be on the part of the laws, it would be on the part of injustice and injustice only men can exercise it.

Finally, Crito has nothing to object to and Socrates convinces him to follow the destiny that the god has dictated to him.


We see here a man who defends his ideals and the consequences that these bring. We can show how clung to the truth and how clingy it was to the laws; he would not violate them even if his life depended on it. He continued to establish, just as in the Apology, how important is the opinion of experts and not that of the vulgar, how important it is not to return injustice with injustice and that justice must be good first of all. It is interesting to note the difference between the bible, since in the old testament the law of the Talon is seen as something ethical, while here it would be something rather ignominious.

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