Pre-socratic Philosopher Quiz Questions

Approved & Edited by ProProfs Editorial Team
The editorial team at ProProfs Quizzes consists of a select group of subject experts, trivia writers, and quiz masters who have authored over 10,000 quizzes taken by more than 100 million users. This team includes our in-house seasoned quiz moderators and subject matter experts. Our editorial experts, spread across the world, are rigorously trained using our comprehensive guidelines to ensure that you receive the highest quality quizzes.
Learn about Our Editorial Process
| By Lianatrevino
L
Lianatrevino
Community Contributor
Quizzes Created: 1 | Total Attempts: 3,486
Questions: 25 | Attempts: 3,489

SettingsSettingsSettings
Pre-socratic Philosopher Quiz Questions - Quiz

How good are you at philosophy? Take this pre-socratic philosopher quiz with philosophy questions. Do you know what pre-Socratics are? It is a group of early Greek philosophers who were born before Socrates. With this quiz, you can test your knowledge as well as enhance it with new information. All the best for a perfect score on this philosophy quiz. Do share the quiz with others and challenge them to score.


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher developed a theory of reincarnation?

    • A.

      Protagoras

    • B.

      Heraclitus

    • C.

      Pythagoras

    • D.

      Parmenides

    Correct Answer
    C. Pythagoras
    Explanation
    Pythagoras is the correct answer because he is known for developing a theory of reincarnation. He believed in the transmigration of souls, where the soul is immortal and goes through a cycle of rebirth into different bodies. This theory was based on the idea that everything in the universe is made up of numbers and that the soul is a mathematical entity that can be reincarnated into various forms. Pythagoras' belief in reincarnation had a significant impact on ancient Greek philosophy and influenced later philosophical and religious traditions.

    Rate this question:

  • 2. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher used his theory of the nature of atoms to explain the character of our sensations (such as our sense of color or the way certain foods taste)?

    • A.

      Empedocles

    • B.

      Thales

    • C.

      Democritus

    • D.

      Heraclitus

    Correct Answer
    C. Democritus
    Explanation
    Democritus, a pre-Socratic philosopher, used his theory of the nature of atoms to explain the character of our sensations. According to Democritus, all matter is made up of tiny, indivisible particles called atoms that constantly move and combine. He believed that different combinations and arrangements of atoms give rise to different sensations, such as our sense of color or the way certain foods taste. This theory suggests that our perceptions and experiences are ultimately determined by the physical properties and interactions of atoms.

    Rate this question:

  • 3. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher believed that the body was the source of evil and that the purpose of life was to purify the soul of the influence of the body?

    • A.

      Protagoras

    • B.

      Parmenides

    • C.

      Pythagoras

    • D.

      Pericles

    Correct Answer
    C. Pythagoras
    Explanation
    Pythagoras believed that the body was the source of evil and that the purpose of life was to purify the soul of the influence of the body. He believed in the concept of metempsychosis, or the transmigration of souls, which meant that the soul would be reborn into a new body after death. To achieve purification, Pythagoras emphasized the importance of moral and intellectual development, as well as the practice of asceticism and self-control. He believed that by detaching oneself from bodily desires and focusing on the pursuit of knowledge and virtue, the soul could be freed from the corrupting influence of the body.

    Rate this question:

  • 4. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher thought that the constantly changing nature of reality was nevertheless made uniform and orderly insofar as it was governed by a force or principle he called the logos?

    • A.

      Democritus

    • B.

      Pythagoras

    • C.

      Parmenides

    • D.

      Heraclitus

    Correct Answer
    D. Heraclitus
    Explanation
    Heraclitus believed that the constantly changing nature of reality was still governed by a force or principle called the logos. This means that although everything is in a state of flux, there is still an underlying order and unity to the world. Heraclitus believed that the logos was the key to understanding the world and that it was responsible for the harmony and balance that exists within it.

    Rate this question:

  • 5. 

    The pre-socratic philosopher who thought reality was composed of atoms and empty space (or the void) was

    • A.

      Democritus

    • B.

      Parmenides

    • C.

      Pythagoras

    • D.

      Empedocles

    Correct Answer
    A. Democritus
    Explanation
    Democritus is the correct answer because he was a pre-Socratic philosopher who believed that reality was composed of atoms and empty space. He proposed that everything in the universe was made up of tiny, indivisible particles called atoms, which combined and separated in the void to form all matter. This theory of atomism was a significant departure from the prevailing philosophical views of his time and laid the foundation for modern atomic theory.

    Rate this question:

  • 6. 

    Which of the following thinkers was a Sophist?

    • A.

      Pythagoras

    • B.

      Democritus

    • C.

      Protagoras

    • D.

      Empedocles

    Correct Answer
    C. Protagoras
    Explanation
    Protagoras was a Sophist, which was a group of ancient Greek thinkers who were known for their skepticism and relativism. They believed that truth and morality were subjective and could vary from person to person. Protagoras was particularly famous for his statement that "man is the measure of all things," emphasizing the importance of individual perception and experience in determining truth. His ideas challenged traditional beliefs and had a significant influence on the development of philosophy and rhetoric.

    Rate this question:

  • 7. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher wrote in riddles and various paradoxical sayings?

    • A.

      Heraclitus

    • B.

      Parmenides

    • C.

      Anaximander

    • D.

      Empedocles

    Correct Answer
    A. Heraclitus
    Explanation
    Heraclitus is the correct answer because he was known for his obscure and enigmatic writing style. He often expressed his philosophical ideas through riddles and paradoxical sayings, which made his work difficult to interpret and understand. This unique approach to writing set him apart from other pre-Socratic philosophers and contributed to his reputation as the "Obscure Philosopher." Parmenides, Anaximander, and Empedocles were also pre-Socratic philosophers, but they did not have the same penchant for riddles and paradoxes as Heraclitus.

    Rate this question:

  • 8. 

    Which Sophist said that we couldn't know the nature of the gods because our minds are too limited, the subject is too obscure, and life is too short of attaining such ultimate knowledge? Hint: he also said, "man is the measure of all things."

    • A.

      Empedocles

    • B.

      Protagoras

    • C.

      Democritus

    • D.

      Gorgias

    Correct Answer
    B. Protagoras
    Explanation
    Protagoras, the Sophist, argued that it is impossible for humans to know the nature of the gods due to the limitations of our minds, the obscurity of the subject, and the brevity of human life. He famously stated that "man is the measure of all things," suggesting that human perception and understanding are the ultimate standards by which everything should be judged. This perspective aligns with Protagoras' relativistic philosophy, which emphasizes the subjective nature of knowledge and truth.

    Rate this question:

  • 9. 

    Which pre-socratic said that Being neither was nor will be but simply is?

    • A.

      Pythagoras

    • B.

      Heraclitus

    • C.

      Thales

    • D.

      Parmenides

    Correct Answer
    D. Parmenides
    Explanation
    Parmenides, a pre-Socratic philosopher, believed that reality is unchanging and eternal. He argued that "Being" is the ultimate reality and that it neither had a beginning nor will have an end, but simply "is." This perspective contrasts with the views of other pre-Socratic philosophers who believed in constant change and flux in the universe. Parmenides' concept of "Being" as the only reality had a significant influence on later philosophical thought.

    Rate this question:

  • 10. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher said reality consisted of the four basic elements, earth, air, fire, and water (along with the force of love and strife)?

    • A.

      Anaximander

    • B.

      Anaximines

    • C.

      Democritus

    • D.

      Empedocles

    Correct Answer
    D. Empedocles
    Explanation
    Empedocles is the correct answer because he believed that reality consisted of the four basic elements: earth, air, fire, and water. He also introduced the concept of love and strife as forces that act upon these elements, causing them to combine and separate. This theory, known as Empedocleanism, was influential in the development of later philosophical and scientific thought.

    Rate this question:

  • 11. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher said that you could not step into the same river twice?

    • A.

      Empedocles

    • B.

      Parmenides

    • C.

      Heraclitus

    • D.

      Pythagoras

    Correct Answer
    C. Heraclitus
    Explanation
    Heraclitus, the pre-Socratic philosopher, stated that you cannot step into the same river twice. This statement reflects his belief in the constant change and flux of the world. According to Heraclitus, everything is in a state of constant motion and transformation, and therefore, no two moments are exactly the same. The river serves as a metaphor for the ever-changing nature of reality, where the water is constantly flowing and never remains the same. This idea challenges the notion of stability and emphasizes the impermanence of existence.

    Rate this question:

  • 12. 

    The SOphist who taught that truth was relative to belief was

    • A.

      Protagoras

    • B.

      Gorgias

    • C.

      Heraclitus

    • D.

      Thales

    Correct Answer
    B. Gorgias
    Explanation
    Gorgias was a Sophist who believed that truth was relative to belief. He argued that there is no absolute truth and that everything is subjective and based on individual perception. Gorgias believed that persuasion and rhetoric were more important than discovering objective truth. He emphasized the power of language and its ability to manipulate and convince people, rather than seeking objective truth. Therefore, Gorgias is the correct answer to the question.

    Rate this question:

  • 13. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher argued that change and motion were illusions and that we shouldn't listen to what our senses tell us about the world?

    • A.

      Heraclitus

    • B.

      Thales

    • C.

      Empedocles

    • D.

      Parmenides

    Correct Answer
    D. Parmenides
    Explanation
    Parmenides, a pre-Socratic philosopher, argued that change and motion were illusions and that our senses cannot be trusted when it comes to perceiving the world. He believed in the concept of "being" as the only reality, and that the world is unchanging and eternal. According to Parmenides, our senses deceive us by presenting a world of constant change and motion, while in reality, true knowledge can only be obtained through reason and rational thought.

    Rate this question:

  • 14. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher believed that nature or the world came to be out of the struggle of fundamental oppositions (like dry and moist and hot and cold and light and dark) and the cyclic movement of these into and out of the Apeiron (or the boundless or the unlimited)?

    • A.

      Thales

    • B.

      Anaximander

    • C.

      Anaximines

    • D.

      Anaxagoras

    Correct Answer
    B. Anaximander
    Explanation
    Anaximander, a pre-Socratic philosopher, believed that the world came to be out of the struggle of fundamental oppositions and the cyclic movement of these into and out of the Apeiron, or the boundless or the unlimited. He proposed that the primary substance from which everything else originated was the Apeiron, which was an eternal and infinite source of all things. Anaximander's philosophy emphasized the dynamic nature of the universe and the interplay of opposing forces.

    Rate this question:

  • 15. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher believed that the cosmos generated a kind of glorious symphony (the Harmony of the Heavenly Spheres) that we could not here unless our souls were sufficiently purified of the influence of our bodies?

    • A.

      Pythagoras

    • B.

      Protagoras

    • C.

      Heraclitus

    • D.

      Anaximines

    Correct Answer
    A. Pythagoras
    Explanation
    Pythagoras believed that the cosmos generated a glorious symphony called the Harmony of the Heavenly Spheres. According to him, we could only hear this symphony if our souls were purified from the influence of our bodies. This suggests that Pythagoras believed in the existence of a spiritual realm beyond the physical world and that the harmony of the cosmos could only be experienced through a pure soul.

    Rate this question:

  • 16. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher said that everything was ultimately air?

    • A.

      Anaximander

    • B.

      Thales

    • C.

      Anaximines

    • D.

      Empedocles

    Correct Answer
    C. Anaximines
    Explanation
    Anaximines is the correct answer because he believed that everything in the world originated from air. He proposed that air is the fundamental substance from which all other elements arise and that changes in air density can result in different states of matter. This theory was a departure from Thales' belief that everything originated from water and marked a significant shift in the understanding of the natural world during the pre-Socratic era.

    Rate this question:

  • 17. 

    Which of the following sayings is attributed to the Sophist Protagoras?

    • A.

      "you cannot step into the same river twice."

    • B.

      "wherever you go, there you are."

    • C.

      "man is the measure of all things."

    • D.

      "dogs bark at those whom they do not know."

    Correct Answer
    C. "man is the measure of all things."
    Explanation
    The saying "man is the measure of all things" is attributed to the Sophist Protagoras. This statement reflects Protagoras' belief in relativism, which suggests that truth and knowledge are subjective and depend on individual perception. According to Protagoras, each person's experience and understanding shape their own reality, making them the ultimate judge of what is true or false. This saying emphasizes the importance of individual perspective and challenges the idea of absolute truth.

    Rate this question:

  • 18. 

    The pre-socratic philosopher associated with music, mathematics, and mysticism was 

    • A.

      Pythagoras

    • B.

      Empedocles

    • C.

      Heraclitus

    • D.

      Parmenides

    Correct Answer
    A. Pythagoras
    Explanation
    Pythagoras is associated with music, mathematics, and mysticism. He is best known for his contributions to mathematics, particularly the Pythagorean theorem. However, he also believed in the mystical power of numbers and believed that music was a manifestation of mathematical principles. Pythagoras saw music as a way to connect with the divine and believed that it had a profound influence on the human soul. Therefore, Pythagoras is the correct answer for the pre-Socratic philosopher associated with music, mathematics, and mysticism.

    Rate this question:

  • 19. 

    The word philosophy was coined by Pythagoras. It's a combination of Philo and Sophia, which together mean

    • A.

      The love of God

    • B.

      The will of Zeus

    • C.

      The love of wisdom

    • D.

      The search for love

    Correct Answer
    C. The love of wisdom
    Explanation
    The word "philosophy" was coined by Pythagoras and is derived from the Greek words "philo" meaning love and "sophia" meaning wisdom. Therefore, the correct answer is "the love of wisdom." This suggests that philosophy is the pursuit and appreciation of knowledge, understanding, and insight into fundamental questions about life, existence, truth, and morality. It emphasizes the importance of critical thinking, rational inquiry, and intellectual curiosity in the quest for wisdom and understanding.

    Rate this question:

  • 20. 

    What were the two general attitudes toward life embraced by the Sophists?

    • A.

      Pragmatism and animism

    • B.

      Skepticism and relativism

    • C.

      Humanism and anthropomorphism

    • D.

      Apathy and cynicism

    Correct Answer
    B. Skepticism and relativism
    Explanation
    The two general attitudes toward life embraced by the Sophists were skepticism and relativism. Sophists were known for their skepticism, which involved questioning and doubting established beliefs and truths. They believed that knowledge was subjective and that there were no absolute truths. Relativism, on the other hand, refers to the belief that truth and morality are subjective and vary from person to person or culture to culture. This means that what is true or morally right for one person may not be true or morally right for another.

    Rate this question:

  • 21. 

    Which of the following statements was not included in Gorgias' treatise "On Nature or What is Not"?

    • A.

      Nothing exists

    • B.

      Even if something did exist, we could not know that it existed

    • C.

      Even if we could know that something existed, we could not communicate this knowledge to anyone else

    • D.

      Even if we could communicate this knowledge to someone else, he or she would probably not be that interested in it anyway

    Correct Answer
    D. Even if we could communicate this knowledge to someone else, he or she would probably not be that interested in it anyway
    Explanation
    The correct answer is "even if we could communicate this knowledge to someone else, he or she would probably not be that interested in it anyway." This statement is not included in Gorgias' treatise "On Nature or What is Not." The treatise primarily focuses on the ideas that nothing exists, and even if something did exist, we could not know that it existed. It also mentions that even if we could know that something existed, we could not communicate this knowledge to anyone else. However, Gorgias does not discuss the level of interest someone else might have in this knowledge.

    Rate this question:

  • 22. 

    Philosophy emerged in ancient Greece when thinkers began to move from

    • A.

      More mythological to more rational ways of explaining the world

    • B.

      More agricultural to more industrial ways of making a living

    • C.

      More rational to more mythological ways of explaining the world

    • D.

      More scientific to more religious ways of explaining the meaning of life

    Correct Answer
    A. More mythological to more rational ways of explaining the world
    Explanation
    Philosophy emerged in ancient Greece when thinkers began to move from more mythological to more rational ways of explaining the world. This means that philosophers started to reject the traditional mythological explanations for natural phenomena and instead sought to understand the world through reason and logic. They began to question and analyze the world around them, seeking rational explanations based on observation and evidence. This shift marked the beginning of a new era in human thought and laid the foundation for the development of Western philosophy.

    Rate this question:

  • 23. 

    Which of the following figures is known as "the Father of Western Philosophy"? (Hint: there's a famous story told about his having once fallen in a cistern because he was so preoccupied looking up at the heavens.)

    • A.

      Thales

    • B.

      Heraclitus

    • C.

      Parmenides

    • D.

      Pythagoras

    Correct Answer
    A. Thales
    Explanation
    Thales is known as "the Father of Western Philosophy" because he was the first philosopher in ancient Greece to seek natural explanations for the world around him, rather than relying on mythology or supernatural beliefs. He is also known for his contributions to mathematics and astronomy. The famous story of him falling into a cistern while stargazing demonstrates his preoccupation with studying the heavens and his dedication to understanding the natural world through observation and reason.

    Rate this question:

  • 24. 

    Which pre-socratic philosopher said that reality was one and that nothing changes?

    • A.

      Pythagoras

    • B.

      Parmenides

    • C.

      Heraclitus

    • D.

      Protagoras

    Correct Answer
    B. Parmenides
    Explanation
    Parmenides believed that reality was one and unchanging. He argued that change and movement were merely illusions, and that true reality is eternal and immutable. According to Parmenides, the senses can deceive us, and true knowledge can only be obtained through reason and rational thought. This belief in the unchanging nature of reality was in stark contrast to the views of other pre-Socratic philosophers, such as Heraclitus, who believed that change and flux were fundamental aspects of the universe.

    Rate this question:

  • 25. 

    What was Heraclitus' symbol for reality?

    • A.

      Earth

    • B.

      Air

    • C.

      Fire

    • D.

      Water

    Correct Answer
    C. Fire
    Explanation
    Heraclitus believed that fire was the symbol for reality. He viewed fire as a transformative and ever-changing element, representing the constant flux and change that he saw as the fundamental nature of the universe. Fire, for Heraclitus, symbolized the dynamic and interconnected nature of reality, where everything is in a state of constant motion and transformation.

    Rate this question:

Related Topics

Back to Top Back to top
Advertisement
×

Wait!
Here's an interesting quiz for you.

We have other quizzes matching your interest.