History and Philosophy of Logic 3 (2):113-127 (1982)

Robin Smith
Texas A&M University
I consider the proper interpretation of the process of ecthesis which Aristotle uses several times in the Prior analytics for completing a syllogistic mood, i.e., showing how to produce a deduction of a conclusion of a certain form from premisses of certain forms. I consider two interpretations of the process which have been advocated by recent scholars and show that one seems better suited to most passages while the other best fits a single remaining passage. I also argue that ecthesis for Aristotle really means ?setting out? the case to be proved using letters. Aristotle?s remarks about the use of letters in mathematical proofs suggest that he had some understanding of rules equivalent to universal generalization and existential instantiation; the ?proofs through ecthesis? are so called because they rest on the latter rule, with which use of letters is involved in a special way
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/01445348208837035
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 51,192
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

What is a Syllogism?T. J. Smiley - 1973 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 2 (1):136 - 154.
Completeness of an Ancient Logic.John Corcoran - 1972 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 37 (4):696-702.
Aristotle and Logical Theory.Jonathan Lear - 1980 - Cambridge University Press.

View all 14 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Founding of Logic.John Corcoran - 1994 - Ancient Philosophy 14 (S1):9-24.
Aristotle's Syllogistic and Core Logic.Neil Tennant - 2014 - History and Philosophy of Logic 35 (2):120-147.
Was Ist Ein Vollkommener Syllogismus des Aristoteles?Theodor Ebert - 1995 - Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 77 (3):221-247.

View all 21 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Fallacies and Formal Logic in Aristotle.David Hitchcock - 2000 - History and Philosophy of Logic 21 (3):207-221.
Modal Ecthesis.Fred Johnson - 1993 - History and Philosophy of Logic 14 (2):171-182.
Apodeictic Ecthesis.Paul Thom - 1993 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 34 (2):193-208.
S4 and Aristotle on Three Syllogisms with Contingent Premisses.Charles J. Kelly - 2002 - Journal of Philosophical Research 27:405-431.


Added to PP index

Total views
143 ( #61,333 of 2,329,861 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
5 ( #151,284 of 2,329,861 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes