Slandering Socrates: Ameipsias, Fr. 7 (Diogenes Laertius, 2.27-28) and Eupolis


“Socrates, the best of men when there are few and the most foolish among the many:

You have come to see us too? You are brave. Where would you get a cloak?

Your appearance is an embarrassment to cobblers everywhere.”


Σώκρατες ἀνδρῶν βέλτιστ᾿ ὀλίγων, πολλῶν δὲ ματαιοταθ᾿, ἥκεις

καὶ σὺ πρὸς ἡμᾶς; καρτερικὸς γ᾿ εἶ. πόθεν ἄν σοι χλαῖνα γένοιτο;

τουτὶ τὸ κακὸν τῶν σκυτότομων κατ᾿ ἐπήρειαν γεγένηται


Pretty sure that the “you have crappy shoes” insult wouldn’t have bothered ol’ Socrates. But Ameipsias, though not a household name, was no slacker: he bested Aristophanes twice! And mocking Socrates seems like a good habit from Old Comedy. Apart from Aristophanes, Eupolis was in on the action too:


“I hate Socrates too,

that prattling panhandler

who figured out everything

except where he can get something to eat.”


μισῶ δὲ καὶ Σωκράτην

τὸν πτωχὸν ἀδολέσχην,

ὃς τἆλλα μὲν πεφρόντικεν,

ὁπόθεν δὲ καταφαγεῖν ἔχοι

τούτου κατημέληκεν


Eupolis? I guess he lost the battle with Socrates.

2 thoughts on “Slandering Socrates: Ameipsias, Fr. 7 (Diogenes Laertius, 2.27-28) and Eupolis

  1. I remember someone making a comment about all of “Socrates’ cobblers and butchers”, or something to that effect, but I can’t recall the source!

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