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Aristotle's Theory of SubstanceThe Categories and Metaphysics Zeta$
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Michael V. Wedin

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199253081

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199253080.001.0001

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The Plan of the Categories

The Plan of the Categories

Chapter:
(p.11) I The Plan of the Categories
Source:
Aristotle's Theory of Substance
Author(s):

Michael V. Wedin (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199253080.003.0002

Wedin argues, against prevailing opinions, that Aristotle's account of homonymy, synonymy, and paronymy, with which the Categories begins, must be understood as an integral part of the treatise. The three ‘onymyies’, as Wedin calls them, are grouping principles, or one‐over‐many principles, that each collect a number of items under a single term. Wedin focuses on synonymy in particular, because it enables Aristotle to construct a theory of the fundamental kinds of things that are, and as such provides the basis for the system of the categories. For Wedin, the Categories is not just concerned with classification but also with ontology and semantics: it offers a theory about the underlying ontological implications of standard categorical statements, with the aim of determining what must exist, and in what relations these things must stand, in order for the statements to be true.

Keywords:   categorical statements, Categories, classification, homonymy, one‐over‐many principles, ontology, paronymy, semantics, synonymy

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