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Aristotle - The Organon ANALYTICA PRIORIA Book 1 Part 10

The second figure with one necessary premiss

1. In the second figure, if the negative premiss is necessary, then the conclusion will be necessary, but if the affirmative, not necessary. First let the negative be necessary; let A be possible of no B, and simply belong to C. Since then the negative statement is convertible, B is possible of no A. But A belongs to all C; consequently B is possible of no C. For C falls under A. The same result would be obtained if the minor premiss were negative: for if A is possible be of no C, C is possible of no A: but A belongs to all B, consequently C is possible of none of the Bs: for again we have obtained the first figure. Neither then is B possible of C: for conversion is possible without modifying the relation.

2. But if the affirmative premiss is necessary, the conclusion will not be necessary. Let A belong to all B necessarily, but to no C simply. If then the negative premiss is converted, the first figure results. But it has been proved in the case of the first figure that if the negative major premiss is not necessary the conclusion will not be necessary either. Therefore the same result will obtain here. Further, if the conclusion is necessary, it follows that C necessarily does not belong to some A. For if B necessarily belongs to no C, C will necessarily belong to no B. But B at any rate must belong to some A, if it is true (as was assumed) that A necessarily belongs to all B. Consequently it is necessary that C does not belong to some A. But nothing prevents such an A being taken that it is possible for C to belong to all of it. Further one might show by an exposition of terms that the conclusion is not necessary without qualification, though it is a necessary conclusion from the premisses. For example let A be animal, B man, C white, and let the premisses be assumed to correspond to what we had before: it is possible that animal should belong to nothing white. Man then will not belong to anything white, but not necessarily: for it is possible for man to be born white, not however so long as animal belongs to nothing white. Consequently under these conditions the conclusion will be necessary, but it is not necessary without qualification.

3. Similar results will obtain also in particular syllogisms. For whenever the negative premiss is both universal and necessary, then the conclusion will be necessary: but whenever the affirmative premiss is universal, the negative particular, the conclusion will not be necessary. First then let the negative premiss be both universal and necessary: let it be possible for no B that A should belong to it, and let A simply belong to some C. Since the negative statement is convertible, it will be possible for no A that B should belong to it: but A belongs to some C; consequently B necessarily does not belong to some of the Cs. Again let the affirmative premiss be both universal and necessary, and let the major premiss be affirmative. If then A necessarily belongs to all B, but does not belong to some C, it is clear that B will not belong to some C, but not necessarily. For the same terms can be used to demonstrate the point, which were used in the universal syllogisms. Nor again, if the negative statement is necessary but particular, will the conclusion be necessary. The point can be demonstrated by means of the same terms.


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