Class, mass and mereology

History and Philosophy of Logic 4 (1-2):157-180 (1983)
Abstract
LeSniewski?s systems of Ontology and Mereology, considered from a purely formal point of view, possessstriking algebraic parallels, ascan be seen in their respective relations to Boolean algebra. But there are alsoimportant divergences, above all that general Mereology is silent, where Ontology is not, on the existenceof ?atoms? (individuals). By employing plural terms, LeSniewski sought to accommodate talk of (distributive)classes, without according these an autonomous ontological status. His logic also ? like predicate logic? has no place for mass predication in its raw state. It is argued that reference both to pluralities and tomasses is ineliminable, and that one must therefore separate the grammatical distinction singular/pluralfrom the ontological distinction individual/class/mass. A kind of language, modelled on kiniewski?s, issuggested which enables these distinctions to be held apart and at the same time, building on the work ofRichard Sharvy, allows us to express the most important relationships between individuals, classes andmasses
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