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In 5th-century BCE Greece, there emerged a new class of teachers, the first generation of Sophists, including, Protagoras of Abdera, Gorgias of Leontini, Hippias of Elis, Prodicus of Ceos, and others. They are sometimes called the “older Sophists” to distinguish these pioneers from those who would later lay claim to the title beginning in the 4th century BCE. The Sophists hailed from different regions of Greece and had a variety of intellectual interests and diverse curricula for their students. But they were united in that they believed that they possessed specialized expertise in teaching, and they offered an education that promised to help students reach new intellectual and social heights. Because they subjected religious, political, and social customs to scrutiny, some Greeks branded them subversive ...

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