They spent their energy in attacking Plato and Aristotle, and hence earned the opprobrious epithet of Eristic. They used their dialectic subtlety to disprove the possibility of motion and decay; unity is the negation of change, increase and decrease, birth and death.
ZocearLKoL g XEyXoL: Sophistici Elenchi: On sophistic (roccaTLKOS) or eristic syllogism (EpLaTLKOS avXAoytapos), so called from the fallacies used by sophists in refutation (€AEy X os) of their opponents.
Of politics, and of " eristic," i.e.
Each of these predominated in its turn, though not to the exclusion of others, the sophistry of culture beginning about 447, and leading to the sophistry of eristic, and the sophistry of rhetoric taking root in central Greece about 427, and merging in the sophistry of politics.
Finally, the practice of rhetoric and eristic, which presently became prominent in sophistical teaching, had, or at any rate seemed to have, a mischievous effect upon conduct; and the charge of seeking, whether in exposition or in debate, not truth but victory - which charge was impressively urged against the sophists by Plato - grew into an accusation of holding and teaching immoral and unsocial doctrines, and in our own day has been the subject of eager controversy.