17744 | De Morgan started the study of relations and their properties |
Full Idea: De Morgan started the sustained interest in the study of relations and their properties. | |
From: report of Augustus De Morgan (On the Syllogism IV [1859]) by Michal Walicki - Introduction to Mathematical Logic History D.1.1 |
13501 | De Morgan found inferences involving relations, which eluded Aristotle's syllogistic |
Full Idea: There was a prejudice against relations (in favour of properties) but De Morgan and others that impeccable inferences turn on relations and elude Aristotle's syllogistic. Thus: All horses are animals. Hence, all heads of horses are heads of animals. | |
From: report of Augustus De Morgan (On the Syllogism IV [1859]) by William D. Hart - The Evolution of Logic 4 | |
A reaction: This is actually an early example of modern analytic philosophy in action. You start with the inferences, and then work back to the ontology and the definition of concepts. But in pinning down such concepts, do we miss their full meaning? |
17743 | De Morgan introduced a 'universe of discourse', to replace Boole's universe of 'all things' |
Full Idea: In 1846 De Morgan introduced the enormously influential notion of a possibly arbitrary and stipulated 'universe of discourse'. It replaced Boole's original - and metaphysically a bit suspect - universe of 'all things'. | |
From: report of Augustus De Morgan (works [1846]) by Michal Walicki - Introduction to Mathematical Logic History D.1.1 | |
A reaction: This not only brings formal logic under control, but also reflects normal talk, because there is always an explicit or implicit domain of discourse when we talk. Of virtually any conversation, you can say what it is 'about'. |