Logic, Traditional - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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The Logic of Terms

To begin with the categorical syllogism, an inference, argument, or syllogism (traditionally, all arguments are assumed to be syllogistic) is a sequence of propositions (premises followed by a conclusion), such as "All animals are mortal; all men are animals; therefore, all men are mortal." Propositions, in turn, are built up from terms—for example, "animals," "mortals," "men." The traditional order of treatment, therefore, begins with the study of terms (or, in writers with a psychological or epistemological bias, ideas) and goes on to the study of propositions (or judgments), concluding with that of syllogisms (or inferences).

The terms from which the propositions principally studied in the traditional logic are built up are common nouns (termini communes), such as "man" and "horse," although some attention is also paid to singular terms, such as "Socrates," "this man," and "the man next door." Much of the...

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This section contains 10,760 words
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Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Logic, Traditional from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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