Socrates and Friends at the Ancient Agora

VIRTUAL TOUR🎥 Politics, Trade and Philosophy in the Heart of Classical Athens | En

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A keen “word merchant” himself, who advocated that only an examined life was really worth living, Socrates spent the best part of each day of his life in the Agora of Athens, where the city’s civic, political and commercial heart beat. Based on various ancient literary sources, we will try to stage various episodes of the philosopher’s life, following Socrates’ footsteps around the surviving ruins of the Athenian Agora, and addressing various issues of space management, philosophy, and Athenian public and private life at the end of the 5th c. BC.

Socrates seems to have left his most distinct footprints in and out of the numerous colonnaded porticoes, or stoas, of the Agora, much frequented places with a multi-faceted role, serving as the seat of superior magistrates, officials, and bankers, as law courts, exhibition rooms, and shops, or simply. as a venue for political and philosophical discourses. Socrates held many of his philosophical discussions in the open square of the Agora near the benches set up by casual merchants, trading every imaginable commodity and attracting swarms of customers. Though not eager to participate in public affairs, Socrates was elected once in 405 BC to serve in the Council of 500 and the Executive Committee, hence we can trace his remote presence in the administrative buildings lining the west side of the Agora, as well.

Associated by an oracle with the cult of Zeus Agoraios while still a child and contrary to various accusations of impiety, Socrates was often seen sacrificing on the altars of the Agora, such as the Altar of the Twelve Gods. Our tribute to Socrates will culminate with the legal proceedings leading to his end, mainly in the alleged site of the most important court, Heliaia, where Socrates was trialed and sentenced to death; and in the State prison, where he was eventually executed, drinking the hemlock most willingly, and defending his ideas to the very last minute.

East coast time zone: 2:00pm – 3:30pm
West coast time zone: 11:00am – 12:30pm
UK time zone: 7:00pm – 8:30pm

Note : Conducted in English narration

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