As Cicero put it, Socrates was always “pretending to need information and professing admiration for the wisdom of his companion”; when Socrates? interlocutors were annoyed with him for behaving in this way they called him eiron, a vulgar term of reproach referring generally to any kind of sly deception with overtones of mockery. The fox was the symbol of the eiron.
All serious discussions of eironeia followed upon the association of the word with Socrates. —Norman D. Knox —Irony (The Autodidact Project)
Part of an interesting collection of essays that deserve some attention from me as I prepare to teach “Media Aesthetics” next term.