On Aristotle On Interpretation 1-8 (Ancient Commentators on by Ammonius

By Ammonius

Aristotle's On Interpretation, the centrepiece of his common sense, examines the connection among conflicting pairs of statements. the 1st 8 chapters, analysed during this quantity, clarify what statements are, ranging from their uncomplicated elements - the phrases - and dealing as much as the nature of adverse affirmations and negations.
Ammonius, who in his ability as Professor at Alexandria from round advert 470 taught just about all the nice sixth-century commentators, left simply this one observation in his personal identify, even though his lectures on different works of Aristotle were written up through his scholars, who incorporated Philoponus and Asclepius. His rules on Aristotle's On Interpretation have been derived from his personal instructor, Proclus, and partially from the nice misplaced remark of Porphyry. the 2 most vital extant commentaries on On Interpretation, of which this can be one (the different being through Boethius) either draw on Porphyry's paintings, that are to some degree reconstructed for them

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88 For affirmation is more perfect than negation, inasmuch as it signifies existence (huparxis), while negation indicates non-existence, and assertion than affirmation, since it is its genus, as we said, and the sentence than assertion, since the affirmative is one of the five species of sentence. And the order of the given enumeration is suited to us, who are such as to proceed from the worse to the better and from the more particular to the more general because of the progress of our knowledge from the imperfect to the more perfect.

Now, since things and thoughts are the same among all peoples (for everywhere the species of man or horse or lion is the same, and similarly the thought concerned with man or stone or any other thing is the same), while vocal sounds and letters are not the same among all peoples (for Greeks use different vocal sounds from Phoenicians, as do Egyptians: ‘different is the tongue of different peoples’ says the poet;98 and, moreover, each people writes its own vocal sounds with different letters), then it is for this reason that insists that things and thoughts are by nature, but that vocal sounds and letters are by imposition, not by nature.

80 Some, Alexander of Aphrodisias for example, have chosen to say that it is as an homonymous vocal sound is divided into different meanings, but others, such as the philosopher Porphyry,81 that it is as a genus is divided into species. No one dared say that it is divided as a whole into parts, since it is seen to be divided neither as a whole whose parts are similar to one another and to the whole (homoiomeres), there being a great difference between affirmation and negation, nor as one whose parts are dissimilar from one another and from the whole (anomoiomeres), in which case one could not call each of the parts by the name of the whole.

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