26 Feb 2017

Luhtala (5.5.4.0) On the Origin of Syntactical Description in Stoic Logic, “The Component of Meaning (Σημαινόμενα)”, summary

 

by Corry Shores

 

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[The following is summary. It redoes this entry. All boldface and bracketed commentary are my own. Paragraph enumerations are also my own, but they follow the paragraph breaks in the text. Please forgive my distracting typos, as proofreading is incomplete.]

 

 

 

Summary of

 

Anneli Luhtala

 

On the Origin of Syntactical Description in Stoic Logic

 

Ch.5 The Stoics

 

5.5 Stoic Logic

 

5.5.4.0

The Component of Meaning (Σημαινόμενα)

 

 

Brief summary:

For the Stoics, meaning (σημαινόμενα) is a matter of the sayable (λεκτόν). The sayable is the incorporeal, rational component of some situation in the world, that is to say, it is a state of affairs. Also, it is the propositional sense of a statement expressing that state of affairs, taking the form of either a full proposition with both a subject and a predicate or a bare predicate without a subject. There are two important definitions the Stoics give for the predicate: {1} it is a state of affairs construed around one or more subjects, or {2} it is a defective sayable which has to be joined to a nominative case in order to yield a judgement.

 

 

 

Summary

 

5.5.4.0.1

[For the Stoics, meaning (σημαινόμενα) is a matter of the sayable (λεκτόν), which is the incorporeal, rational component – the state of affairs – of some situation in the world, and it is as well the propositional sense of a statement corresponding to that state of affairs, taking the form of either a full proposition with both a subject and a predicate or a bare predicate without a subject.]

 

Diogenes Laertius explains the Stoic notion of meaning (σημαινόμενα). It is a matter of the sayable (λεκτόν). The sayable (λεκτόν) is something that “subsists in accordance with a rational presentation,” and it can hold either in a full proposition or in a simple predicate. When there is both subject and predicate, it is a complete sayable, and when it is a predicate without a subject, it is an incomplete sayable. The predicate is what is said of something or it is a state of affairs involving one or more subjects. [Please consult the quotation to follow. This seems to imply that a state of affairs is not something corporeal. Maybe we might be able to say the following. We say that the tree is green. There is a state of affairs, the tree’s being green. Its greenness, as a quality, is corporeal. But the tree’s being green, its having of this predicate, is incorporeal. It is something rational about the world, and it is also the sense of the statement describing that situation in the world.]

Diogenes Laertius introduces the component of meaning (σημαινόμενα) as follows:

The topic which deals with states of affairs (πράγματα) and significations (σημαινόμενα) includes that of sayables (λεκτά), both those that are complete and propositions and syllogisms, and those which are incomplete, and active and passive predicates. They say that a sayable (λεκτόν) is what subsists in accordance with a rational presentation. Sayables, the Stoics say, are divided into complete and incomplete, the latter being ones whose expression is unfinished. Those are defective the expression of which is unfinished, e.g. ‘writes’, for we ask, ‘Who?’ In complete sayables the expression is finished, e.g. ‘Socrates writes.’ So incomplete sayables include predicates, whereas ones that are complete include propositions, syllogisms, questions, and inquiries. (Diog. Laert. VII,63, tr. Long/Sedley 1987: 196)142

The theory of sayables (λεκτά) belongs to the component of meaning (σημαινόμενα). The notion of sayable (λεκτόν) as described above covers predicates and propositions but the nominal part of the proposition is not specified in these terms. Diogenes Laertius quotes the following definitions of the predicate as pertaining to Stoic propositional analysis:

(1) the predicate is what is said of something (το κατά τινος &γοpευό­ μενον) or (2) the predicate is a state of affairs construed around one or more subjects (πρᾶγμα συντακτὸν περί τινος ἢ τινῶν), according to Apollodorus, or (3) the predicate is a defective sayable which has to be joined to a nominative case in order to yield a judgement (λεκτὸν ἐλλιπὲς συντακτὸν ὀρθῇ πτώσει πρὸς ἀξιώματος γένεσιν). (Diog. Laert. VII,64)143

| These definitions are followed by different classifications of the predicate which will be discussed below.

142. Ἐν δὲ τῷ περὶ τῶν πραγμάτων καὶ τῶν σημαινομένων τόπῳ τέτακται ὁ περὶ λεκτῶν καὶ αὐτοτελῶν καὶ ἀξιωμάτων καὶ συλλογισμῶν λόγος καὶ ὁ περὶ ἐλλιπῶν τε καὶ κατηγορημάτων καὶ ὀρθῶν καὶ ὑπτίων. Φασὶ δὲ (τὸ) λεκτὸν εἶναι τὸ κατὰ φαντασίαν λογικὴν ὑφιστάμενον. τῶν δὲ λεκτῶν τὰ μὲν λέγουσιν εἶναι αὐτοτελῆ οἱ Στωικοί, τὰ δ᾽ ἐλλιπῆ. ἐλλιπῆ μὲν οὖν ἐστι τὰ ἀναπάρτιστον ἔχοντα τὴν ἐκφοράν, οἷον Γράφει: ἐπιζητοῦμεν γάρ, Τίς; αὐτοτελῆ δ᾽ ἐστὶ τὰ ἀπηρτισμένην ἔχοντα τὴν ἐκφοράν, οἷον Γράφει Σωκράτης. ἐν μὲν οὖν τοῖς ἐλλιπέσι λεκτοῖς τέτακται τὰ κατηγορήματα, ἐν δὲ τοῖς αὐτοτελέσι τὰ ἀξιώματα καὶ οἱ συλλογισμοὶ καὶ τὰ ἐρωτήματα καὶ τὰ πύσματα. [Following Perseus]

143. Ἔστι δὲ τὸ κατηγόρημα τὸ κατά τινος ἀγορευόμενον ἢ πρᾶγμα συντακτὸν περί τινος ἢ τινῶν, ὡς οἱ περὶ Ἀπολλόδωρόν φασιν, ἢ λεκτὸν ἐλλιπὲς συντακτὸν ὀρθῇ πτώσει πρὸς ἀξιώματος γένεσιν. τῶν δὲ κατηγορημάτων τὰ μέν ἐστι συμβάματα, οἷον τὸ διὰ πέτρας πλεῖν. καὶ τὰ μέν ἐστι τῶν κατηγορημάτων ὀρθά, ἃ δ᾽ ὕπτια, ἃ δ᾽ οὐδέτερα. ὀρθὰ μὲν οὖν ἐστι τὰ συντασσόμενα μιᾷ τῶν πλαγίων πτώσεων πρὸς κατηγορήματος γένεσιν, οἷον Ἀκούει, Ὁρᾷ, Διαλέγεται: ὕπτια δ᾽ ἐστὶ τὰ | συντασσόμενα τῷ παθητικῷ μορίῳ, οἷον Ἀκούομαι, Ὁρῶμαι: οὐδέτερα δ᾽ ἐστὶ τὰ μηδετέρως ἔχοντα, οἷον Φρονεῖ, Περιπατεῖ. ἀντιπεπονθότα δέ ἐστιν ἐν τοῖς ὑπτίοις, ἃ ὕπτια ὄντα ἐνεργήματα (δέ) ἐστιν, οἷον Κείρεται. [Following Perseus]

(86-87)

 

 

 

5.5.4.0.2

[As evinced in their variety of definitions for propositions, there is diversity in the Stoic approach to the predicate.]

 

[Recall from above that Diogenes Laertius gave the following three definitions for “predicate” in Stoic philosophy: (1) the predicate is what is said of something or (2) the predicate is a state of affairs construed around one or more subjects, according to Apollodorus, or (3) the predicate is a defective sayable which has to be joined to a nominative case in order to yield a judgement.] We can infer from the fact that there are three definitions for the predicate that it was a prominent element in the Stoic proposition and also that there was notable diversity in their approach to propositions. Luhtala sees these as three different definitions [perhaps meaning that they do not overlap in their meanings.] However, the first definition does not reflect distinctly Stoic concerns, while the second two do. Luhtala “will argue that both manifestly Stoic defnitions are applicable to constructions involving two nominals, which was a novelty in the tradition of propositional analysis” (87).

 

 

From:

 

Luhtala, Anneli. 2000. On the Origin of Syntactical Description in Stoic Logic. Münster: Nodus.

 

 

Other texts, cited by Luhtala:

 

Diogenes Laertius: Lives of eminent philosophers. Translated by Robert D. Hicks. 2 vols. London: William Heinemann / Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press 1950.

The Perseus Greek page for the Diogenes’ passages:

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0257%3Abook%3D7%3Achapter%3D1

The Perseus English page for the Diogenes’ passages:

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0258%3Abook%3D7%3Achapter%3D1

 

 

Long, Anthony A. / Sedley, David N. 1987. The Hellenistic philosophers. 2 vols. Cambridge: Cambridge UniversityPress.

 

 

 

 

This entry redoes the one here, made a while ago:

http://piratesandrevolutionaries.blogspot.com/2009/04/stoic-logic-and-semantics-554-component.html

 

 

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