more from Anil Gupta

Single Idea 11217

[catalogued under 2. Reason / D. Definition / 4. Real Definition]

Full Idea

The chemist aims at real definition, whereas the lexicographer aims at nominal definition. ...Perhaps real definitions investigate the thing denoted, and nominal definitions investigate meaning and use.

Gist of Idea

Chemists aim at real definition of things; lexicographers aim at nominal definition of usage


Anil Gupta (Definitions [2008], 1.1)

Book Reference

'Stanford Online Encyclopaedia of Philosophy', ed/tr. Stanford University [], p.3

A Reaction

Very helpful. I really think we should talk much more about the neglected chemists when we discuss science. Theirs is the single most successful branch of science, the paradigm case of what the whole enterprise aims at.