Socrates' "old accusers" were a collage of faceless
individuals (except for Aristophanes) who, through
the rumor mill, had discredited Socrates over
a period of many years, the "new accusers" are those who currently have brought
Socrates to trial. The three mentioned by name
in the Apology are Meletus,
Anytus, and Lycon.
It is important to note that each of these men represents a different segment
of society in terms of profession. Meletus is
a poet, Anytus a politician, and
Lycon an orator. This "spread" is significant
given that Socrates carries out his "mission"
(i.e. the seeking of wisdom) by discussion with Athenian citizens representing
different categories of expertise. In the process he often alienates them
by exposing their ignorance.