Pythagoras was born in 569 BC in Samos, to Mnesarchus of Tyre and Pythias of Samos. Mnesarchus was a merchant and so Pythagoras had the opportunity to visit many lands as a child traveling with his father. Besides these facts there is very little that is known of the childhood of Pythagoras. There is no doubt that he would have been properly educated and there is evidence to show that Pythagoras was influenced by three philosophers the most important of which was Pherkydes. Another person to influence his life was Thales and it is believed that it was Thales that stoked the interest of mathematics in Pythagoras. The pupil of Thales Anaximander is believed to have contributed many ideas in geometry and cosmology that were to influence the views of Pythagoras. Pythagoras as a young man moved to Egypt and remained there till the Persians invaded Egypt and he was taken as a prisoner by the Persian.
In 520 BC Pythagoras returned to Samos from Babylon though how he escaped no one knows and shortly afterwards proceeded to Crete from where he learned the system of the laws there and returned to Samos. Pythagoras then went to Southern Italy. The exact date is disputed. Pythagoras formed his religious and philosophical school in Croton in Southern Italy and had many followers. The head of this society was Pythagoras and the inner circle was known as mathematikoi. The members of the mathematikoi lived on a permanent basis in the society and were vegetarians and maintained no personal possessions. Pythagoras was their teacher and the society was made up of strict rules. There is no clear evidence when Pythagoras though some historians take the year 469 BC as the year of his demise due to the changes that were seen in this society that could not have happened when he was alive. (Pythagoras of Samos)
The moral teachings of Pythagoras are in the seventy one lines that has acquired the title of golden words. These teachings require man to respect their own parents and gods and to lead a life of abstinence and to be prudent in thought and action. Pythagoras believed in the transmigration of souls and also believed that the Universe was created out of chaos by the measure and harmony taking form. He also believed that numbers were the very basis of the universe and not just symbols of quantitative relations and therefore was to be considered as sacred. The contribution that Pythagoras made towards the current understanding of the movements of the earth is that the idea of the rotation of earth on its axis and at the same time revolving round may be considered to be the contribution of Pythagoras. (Pythagoras (fl. 580-490 BC)) The society under Pythagoras also made significant contributions in the field of medicine and it is believed that the modern day Hippocrates oath which is taken by the doctors in medical care has its origins from this society. Another development was the a regeneration in the thoughts of Pythagoras and this society during the early Christian era and it added some of the ideas of Jewish and Hellenistic thought that added to the mystical element in the elements of the thoughts of Pythagoras. (Pythagoras: / www.infoplease.com)
Socrates was born in 469 BC and his father was Sophronicus, who was a sculptor. The belief is that he practiced the art of his father in his early life. Later in his middle life he married Xanthippe who was considered a shrew and became a legend in this regard, though there are no ascertainable facts in this regard. The teachers of philosophy on the case of Socrates remains unknown though he was acquainted with doctrines ascribed to Parmenides, Heraclitus, Anaxagoras, and the atomists. He drew acclaim for his intellectual powers even before he reached the age of forty, when as reported by Plato the oracle at Delphi announced that he was the wisest man in Greece. Socrates himself was a humble man who claimed that this was because that while many others proclaimed their knowledge without realizing the extent of their ignorance he was aware of his own ignorance. Socrates was in total belief that his duty was in searching for wisdom about the right way of…