History and Philosophy of Logic 30 (4):369-388 (2009)

It has been noted before in the history of logic that some of Frege's logical and semantic views were anticipated in Stoicism. In particular, there seems to be a parallel between Frege's Gedanke and Stoic lekton; and the distinction between complete and incomplete lekta has an equivalent in Frege's logic. However, nobody has so far claimed that Frege was actually influenced by Stoic logic; and there has until now been no indication of such a causal connection. In this essay, we attempt, for the first time, to provide detailed evidence for the existence of this connection. In the course of our argumentation, further analogies between the positions of Frege and the Stoics will be revealed. The classical philologist Rudolf Hirzel will be brought into play as the one who links Frege with Stoicism. The renowned expert on Stoic philosophy was Frege's tenant and lived in the same house as the logician for many years. In der Geschichte der Logik ist häufig bemerkt worden, dass einige der logischen und semantischen Auffassungen Freges in der Stoa antizipiert worden sind. Genannt wurden insbesondere die Parallelen zwischen dem Fregeschen Gedanken und dem stoischen Lekton sowie die Unterscheidung zwischen vollständigen und unvollständigen Lekta, die bei Frege ihre Entsprechung hat. Ein Wirkungszusammenhang ist allerdings nicht behauptet worden. Dazu gab es bislang auch keinen Anlass. Der vorliegende Beitrag versucht erstmalig, einen detaillierten Indizienbeweis für das Bestehen eines solchen Zusammenhangs vorzulegen. Dabei werden weitere charakteristische Übereinstimmungen zwischen Frege und der Stoa aufgewiesen. Als Mittelsmann wird der Altphilologe Rudolf Hirzel vorgestellt. Er wohnte lange Jahre als Mieter zusammen mit Frege im selben Haus und war ein anerkannter Experte der stoischen Philosophie.
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DOI 10.1080/01445340903340058
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