Xenophon 430-354 B.C.
Xenophon had a varied and unusual career. He had no definite profession and during a portion of his life he lived on his estate in Greece given to him by the Spartons. For a time he was an outstanding cavalry leader in the Greek mercenary army which fought under Cyrus in Asia Minor. He was noted for his love of horses, hunting, and military pursuits.
He was presumably a student and disciple of Socrates which indicates that he spent a portion of his life in Athens. Both Xenophon and Plato have been the greatest sources of information concerning Socrates.
Xenophon spent a considerable amount of time in writing. He composed Anabasis between 379 and 371 B.C. He wrote Memorabilia (four books) to defend Socrates against the charge of irreligion and of "corrupting" Athenian youth. In Oeconomicos he presented a dialogue between Socrates and the son of one of Socrates' friends concerning the means of managing an estate and the problems involved therein. His discussions covered green manuring, building up a "poor soil" and using natural vegetation as a guide to soil type. He presumably wrote this material as a result of his experiences as a gentleman farmer on his estate and while inspecting his stable, fields, and vineyards. He employed the need for initiative and vision in farming which apparently was as necessary four centuries before Christ as is the case 20 centuries after.
Xenophon, The Anabasis, by Edward Spelman, New York Harper, 1847.
________, Memorabilia and Oeconomicus, trans. E.C. Marchant, Cambridge, Mass., Harvard Univ. Press, 1965