Socrates (469-399 B.C.) was a classical Greek philosopher who is credited with laying the fundamentals of modern Western philosophy. He is known for creating Socratic irony and the Socratic method (elenchus). He is best recognized for inventing the teaching practice of pedagogy, wherein a teacher questions a student in a manner that draws out the correct response. He has had a profound influence on Western philosophy, along with his students Plato and Aristole. Though much of Socrates' contribution is to the field of ethics, his input to the field of epistemology and logic is also noteworthy.
Details of the life of Socrates can be obtained from writing of his associates and students, Plato, Aristophanes and Xenophon. There is no proof that Socrates himself wrote anything. Most of whatever we know of him is through Plato's works like 'The Apology'. Socrates was primarily know for his ideas, communication skills and public teachings. His views and ideas are reflected through his associates' works. In Plato's work, Socrates' father was Sophroniscus and his mother Phaenarete, a midwife. Socrates married Xanthippe, who was much younger than him and he had three sons, Lamprocles, Sophroniscus and Menexenus. Very little is known on what Socrates did for a living. According to Timon, he took over the stonemasonry trade, which was a family business, although Xenophon's version suggests that he dedicated his life to philosophical discussion. Aristophanes' writings describe Socrates running a sophist school and getting paid for it. Xenophon and Plato disagree with this saying that Socrates did not accept any payment for his teaching, with his poverty acting as proof of this fact. In Plato's dialogues he portrays Socrates as a soldier who served in the Athenian army and fought in the battles of Potidaea, Amphipolis, and Delium.