more from Arnauld / Nicole

Single Idea 16784

[catalogued under 14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / k. Explanations by essence]

Full Idea

The form is what renders a thing such and distinguishes it from others, whether it is a being really distinct from the matter, according to the Schools, or whether it is only the arrangement of the parts. By this form one must explain its properties.

Gist of Idea

Forms make things distinct and explain the properties, by pure form, or arrangement of parts


Arnauld / Nicole (Logic (Port-Royal Art of Thinking) [1662], III.18 p240), quoted by Robert Pasnau - Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671 27.6

Book Reference

Pasnau,Robert: 'Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671' [OUP 2011], p.652

A Reaction

If we ask 'what explains the properties of this thing' it is hard to avoid coming up with something that might be called the 'form'. Note that they allow either substantial or corpuscularian forms. It is hard to disagree with the idea.