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Metaphysica

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 97–100 | Cite as

Dale Jacquette, Ontology

McGill-Queen’s University Press, Montreal, 2002, xii. 348 pp., ISBN 0-7735-2463-0, $ 44.95 (hbk)
  • Herbert HochbergEmail author
Review
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Meinong thought that “The Golden Mountain is golden” is true, irrespective of there not being a golden mountain. This involved his “theory of objects” and notion of an incomplete object. We cannot truly say of the Golden Mountain that it is 1,000 meters high or that it is not so. By contrast, an existent mountain, like the “the tallest mountain in Europe,” is either 1, 000 meters or not, though that specific height is not mentioned in the descriptive phrase. Mount Elbrus, as an existent, is a “complete” object, and its being so marks a crucial difference from the non-existent Golden Mountain. The dichotomy of complete-incomplete introduces Jacquette’s provocative idea that one can analyze the concept of existence—or explicate what it is to say “of” a purported object that it exists—and, along with that, the idea of what it is for a “world” to be actual or existent, as opposed to merely possible. In the case of an object, or a world, to exist or be actual is to be “maximally complete.”

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© Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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