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Aristotle - The Organon ANALYTICA PRIORIA Book 1 Part 35

Terms need not be single words

1. We must not always seek to set out the terms a single word: for we shall often have complexes of words to which a single name is not given. Hence it is difficult to reduce syllogisms with such terms. Sometimes too fallacies will result from such a search, e.g. the belief that syllogism can establish that which has no mean. Let A stand for two right angles, B for triangle, C for isosceles triangle. A then belongs to C because of B: but A belongs to B without the mediation of another term: for the triangle in virtue of its own nature contains two right angles, consequently there will be no middle term for the proposition AB, although it is demonstrable. For it is clear that the middle must not always be assumed to be an individual thing, but sometimes a complex of words, as happens in the case mentioned.


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