Aeschines (2) Socraticus
(4th cent. bce), of the deme of Sphettus in Attica, a devoted follower of Socrates, was present at his trial and death. He wrote speeches for the lawcourts and taught oratory, but fell into poverty and took refuge at the court in Syracuse, returning to Athens after the expulsion of Dionysius (2) II in 356. Best known as the author of Socratic dialogues which resemble Xenophon (1)'s more than Plato (1)'s, Aeschines was apparently not an original thinker, and his Socrates expounds common ethical views. Although only fragments survive today, seven dialogues were considered genuine in antiquity: Alcibiades, Axiochus, Aspasia, Callias, Miltiades, Rhinon, Telauges. The first of these was partly intended to defend Socrates against charges of corrupting the young Alcibiades. The dialogues of Aeschines were highly esteemed for their style and their faithfulness to Socrates' character and conversational manner.