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The Missing Chapter from the Logical Investigations: Husserl on Lotze’s Formal and Real Significance of Logical Laws


In the Logical Investigations Husserl announced a critique of Lotze’s epistemology, but it was never included in the printed text. The aim of my paper is to investigate the remnant of Husserl’s planned text with special emphasis on the question of whether it goes beyond the obvious aspects of Husserl’s indebtedness to Lotze. Using Husserl’s student notes, excerpts, and book annotations, I refine the dating of Husserl’s encounter with Lotze and separate the various layers of influence. I argue that Husserl’s acquaintance with Lotze’s epistemology forms a separate layer of influence, and that this layer cannot antedate the middle of the decade before the Logical Investigation. Husserl’s investigation of Lotze’s epistemology constitutes the most interesting aspect of the unpublished text that underlies the missing chapter from the Logical Investigations. I show that the most relevant influence of Lotze’s epistemology on Husserl lies in Lotze’s idea of the formal and real significance of logical laws. Although Husserl negatively evaluated Lotze’s epistemological problem both in the planned chapter and in other printed parts of the Logical Investigations, the problem repeatedly surfaced during Husserl’s Göttingen period. Finally, I use an unpublished student transcript to reconstruct Husserl’s SS 1912 seminar on Lotze’s epistemology. I argue that the deeper dimension of Lotze’s epistemological problem (and Husserl’s rejection of it) lies in the way that it highlights the epistemological function of phenomenology.

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  1. Hua XVIII, 221 n. 3 (according to the text variant of the first edition). I will analyse the variants of this footnote in Sect. 2 below.

  2. In a welcome development, Lotze is being gradually rediscovered (both as a philosopher and as a polymath scientist). See esp. Pester (1997). Unfortunately, his treatment of Husserl is still confined to the usual themes. Since Lotze died before Husserl’s philosophical career commenced, the recent publication of material from Lotze and his contemporaries could not mention Husserl, although included is Hans Vaihinger’s inventory of the German philosophers around 1893, which classifies Husserl as a “special disciple” of Carl Stumpf (Lotze 2003, 730). This nicely illustrates that in the 1890s Husserl was perceived by his contemporaries as a disciple of Stumpf (and not of Brentano).

  3. BW V, 179 (cf. BW I, 41). This is also echoed by Husserl’s widow in 1940 (Husserl, M. 1988, 115).

  4. Husserl’s ex libris is in volume one of Lotze’s three-volume work (Lotze 1876–1880).

  5. See the bibliography concerning the editions owned by Husserl (Lotze 1851, 1868, 1882a, 1882c, 1884a, 1884b; and those mentioned below). Husserl did not own Lotze’s earlier metaphysics (Lotze 1841) and some of Lotze’s (not widely available) earlier and non-philosophical writings (not listed in the bibliography). Furthermore, Husserl’s copy of Lotze’s collected writings (Lotze 1885–1891) is missing the two subvolumes of the third volume.

  6. Husserl (1994, 184). In Sect. 2.2 I will return to Husserl’s Nostrifikation examination.

  7. In SS 1914 Husserl presided over Jean Hering’s state examination, which was allegedly entitled Die Lehre vom Apriori bei Lotze (see Schuhmann (1977, 188). Schuhmann’s claim is mainly based on Edith Stein’s recollection, which was written only in 1938). Husserl read Hering’s unpublished Staatsarbeit, which unfortunately cannot be located. Husserl’s notes on this occasion (Ms. A III 1/4–6) do not mention Lotze. On December 18, 1925, Husserl presided over Carl Hanser’s doctoral examination (Schuhmann 1977, 299). The dissertation is in Husserl’s library, though without signs of having been read (Hanser 1928).

  8. In a letter in 1911 Husserl called Lotze “one of the greatest German philosophers since Kant” (BW IX, 155).

  9. Lotze’s name is probably the twelfth most frequent in Husserl’s Nachlass. My count is based on Schuhmann’s Index Nominum (Schuhmann 1975), excluding typescripts (Section M), varia, letters, and references by Husserl’s collaborators. Lotze is unambiguously overtaken by Aristotle, Brentano, Descartes, Hume, Leibniz, Locke, and Plato; and his name has approximately the same frequency as Berkeley, Bolzano, Hobbes, Lipps (both Theodor and Hans, or even Friedrich), and (both) Mills. Schuhmann’s count does not include Hodgson, Kant, or Pfänder; I suppose that only Kant occurs more frequently. While Schuhmann’s index is not complete, nor this method strictly accurate, it still conveys a revealing picture.

  10. See Husserl’s pivotal letter to Natorp, in March 1897, where he describes the Prolegomena he had been already writing since the winter: „Meine eigene Position begründe ich ausführlich zunächst durch Parallelisirung der logischen und algebraischen Sätze“ (BW V, 53). I will briefly return to Husserl’s early declarations on the aims of the Prolegomena in Sect. 3.2.

  11. See Hua XVIII, 73, 171; Hua Mat I, 241, 271–272 (although the latter, Husserl’s SS 1895 Über die neueren Forschungen zur deduktiven Logik lecture—contrary to Husserl’s much repeated mistake of attributing the origins of the Prolegomena to a lecture in “1895”—did not form the basis of the Prolegomena. See E. Schuhmann in Hua Mat I, xi ff.).

  12. Hua Mat II, 19, 34 and Hua Mat III, 43.

  13. Hua Mat V, 27 and Hua XXIV, 56.

  14. The most pregnant formulations are found in Husserl’s 1903 review of Melchior Palágyi’s book (Hua XXII, 156) and in an orphaned fragment of the draft preface for the 1913 edition of the Logical Investigations (Hua XX/1, 430).

  15. Hua XVIII, 229; Husserl’s acknowledgement is repeated in the Investigations as well (Hua XIX/1, 138 n. 3).

  16. Hua XX/1, 290, 292, 414, 415, 417, 430.

  17. See Hua V, 57–59. (Marly Biemel’s edition deviates from the underlying ink manuscript.)

  18. In the second draft (Hua IX, 270); see also Hua VII, 349 that was classified by Rudolf Boehm as belonging to this context.

  19. See also BW III, 407 (to Mahnke in 1917) and BW VI, 460 (to Welch in 1933).

  20. This softening is nicely demonstrated by the changes he made in the second edition of the Prolegomena: Originally, he was speaking about „die entscheidenden Einflüsse“ he received from Bolzano and Lotze; in 1913 he changed it to „entscheidenden Anstöße“ (Hua XVIII, 229). Husserl’s careful avoidance of the word “influence” is also manifest in the draft preface to the second edition, written about four months after the modifications of the Prolegomena: „Impulse“ (Hua XX/1, 292), „helles Licht“ (295), „Anregungen“ (305), „Einwirkung“ (414), „Impuls“ (414), „hoffnungsvolles Licht“ (414), „Impulse“ (414), „Mut“ (414). This change is probably related to Husserl’s general intention to distance his phenomenology from the fashion of labelling earlier philosophers as proto-phenomenologist, thereby diluting phenomenology itself (see Hua V, 57 ff.).

  21. Hua Mat I, 152, 153, 155–157, 162 (SS 1896); Hua Mat II, 185 (WS 1902/03); Hua XXII, 250 (1904); Hua Mat V, 3 (here Lotze is explicitly listed as a theorist of judgements; SS 1905); Hua Mat VI, 189, 190 (WS 1908/09); Hua XXX, 354 (WS 1908/09); Ms. A I 33/27a.

  22. Hua Mat I, 211 (SS 1896); Hua Mat VI, 156 (WS 1908/09).

  23. Hua VII, 310 (a survey of various definitions of philosophy, cf. Ms. F I 42/22a); Hua XXV, 47 (Husserl’s remark in his copy of the Philosophy as a Rigorous Science essay, where he classified Lotze as a proponent of Weltanschauungsphilosophie), Hua XXXVII, 148 (Lotze was classified as an emotivist in Husserl’s SS 1920 and SS 1924 ethics lectures); Ms. F I 19/174b (Lotze’s warning about the equivocality of the word „Begriff“).

  24. Lotze (1874, 597); p. 608 in the second edition (Lotze 1880) which was owned by Husserl. In the following I will refer to the second edition (Lotze 1880) that was used by Husserl. Lotze’s closing words are explicitly quoted by Husserl in Hua XXV, 56 (Philosophie als strenge Wissenschaft), Hua XVII, 354 (part of Husserl’s WS 1920/21 lecture on transcendental logic); Hua XXXV, 646 (draft text of the London Lectures), 298 (a different position in the final text of the London Lectures, included in the subsequent Einleitung in die Philosophie lecture); Hua XXXII, 244 (a note to the Natur und Geist lecture), 313 (a draft version the Natur und Geist lecture); Hua XVII, 19 (Formal and Transcendental Logic). Further indirect references (without mentioning Lotze’s name): Hua XXVII, 112 (in 1922/23); Hua XXXIX, 733 (in 1932). Curiously, in 1892 Husserl seems to attribute these words to both Lotze and Ernst Schröder (Hua XXI, 411), even though Schröder explicitly contradicts Lotze (Schröder 1890, 105)—something Husserl must have known, since he had reviewed Schröder’s book one year earlier (see Hua XXII, 3–43; Willard (1984, 137) is obviously not aware of this lapsus). There is another passage in the mid-1900s where Husserl refers to Lotze’s distinction between Deutung and Erklärung, but in a slightly different context and not referring to the closing words of the Logik (see Ms. B I 1/14). In Husserl’s copy of Lotze’s book (signature: BQ 285), “N<ota> b<ene>” (“note well”) is written with blue pencil on the margin of this passage.

  25. The declarations in Husserl’s published works exerted a decisive influence already on the pre-war secondary literature in a series of emblematic university dissertations (see e.g. Ssalagoff 1910; Maxsein 1933, 1 ff., 24, 38 ff.), dedicated studies (e.g. Linke 1924), and occasional references (e.g. Bixler 1929, 592). It was not as widespread as the association between Husserl and Brentano (propelled by Oskar Kraus’ crusade to demonstrate Brentano’s superiority) and between Husserl and Bolzano (probably amplified by M. Palágyi’s charge of plagiarism against Husserl, cf. Hua XXII, 156, 158). For instance, Werner Illemann’s pioneering study of Husserl’s early philosophy completely ignored Lotze’s influence and focused instead on Brentano and Bolzano (Illemann 1932). After the publication of Husserl’s draft preface by Eugen Fink in 1939, Husserl’s indebtedness to Lotze became a standard part of Husserl scholarship. See for instance the influential early investigations of Farber (1940, 13) and Biemel (1959, 198). This standard picture has been passed down in later generations of scholarly literature; and the recent welcome surge in interest in the original context of Husserl’s philosophy has remained confined to Brentano’s school and Bolzano. Thus it does not challenge the received view of Lotze’s influence on Husserl. A recent study of Husserl and Lotze (Hauser 2003) covers Ms. K I 59, the supposed base of Husserl’s planned chapter. However, it is mostly confined to the context of psychologism and logic, and its investigation of the epistemological implications of Husserl’s critique (pp. 164–165) is limited. Furthermore, its textual base—apart from Ms. K I 59—is restricted to the more known published writings of Husserl. As Robin D. Rollinger has remarked recently about this situation in his study of Lotze’s theory of abstraction, “There is nonetheless still a need to examine this relation [the relation between Husserl and Lotze] in greater detail on the basis of the many references to Lotze in Husserl’s unpublished writings as well as annotations in his copies of works by Lotze” (Rollinger 2004, 158 n. 17).

  26. In translating this phrase and other shorter quotations from Lotze I have mostly relied on Bernard Bosanquet’s English translation published in 1884, but I have decided to leave most of the quotations untranslated.

  27. The Berichtigungen is not reproduced in the critical edition, but its content is merged into the text.

  28. The volume published in 1901 forms only the first series of investigations, which Husserl planned to augment with a second series in the coming years. The inner title page of the second volume of 1901 indeed says „Zweiter Theil. […] Erste Reihe.“ In the next partial edition in 1913 this inner title page is completely omitted, and the book is now called „Zweiter Band. […] I. Teil“, which is followed by the „Zweiter Band. […] II. Teil“ in 1921. The Prolegomena, originally called „Erster Theil“, also became „Erster Band“. Cf. BW II, 140–141.

  29. Hua XX/1, 414–415.

  30. In the printed text Husserl does not specify its status, but in the text fragments of the 1913 preface he calls them „Anhang“ and „Beilage“ (see above).

  31. See e.g. Ms. K I 59/4a.

  32. As Husserl said in a draft of the book, „Ich brauche kaum zu sagen, daß auch die Forschung des Metaphysikers und Logikers eine psychologische Forschung ist.“ (Hua XXI, 302; see also p. 263, 266). The “subjective side” of Husserl’s position in the Psychological Studies is well characterised by his remark in a draft: „Subjektiv liegt nichts weiteres vor als ein zeitlich-inhaltliches Kontinuum von Anschauungen“ (Hua XXII, 276, cf. 273, 282). This is also visible in the published articles: Hua XXII, 111, 120 ff. Cf. also his retrospective characterisation in 1897 (Hua XXII, 133 line 15), and Schuhmann 2004 (esp. 105 ff.).

  33. In 1890–1891, already before the Philosophy of Arithmetic appeared, Husserl was working on a planned second volume (see e.g. dated drafts Hua XII, 340–379 [1890], 408–427 [November 1891]). In 1891, he reviewed Schröder’s Logik (see above) and was involved in an unfortunate plagiarism debate with Andreas Voigt (see Hua XXII, 44–91), which pre-empted Husserl’s return to the field of mathematical logic. The next years (1892–1893) are spent working on his planned book on space (see e.g. Hua XXI, 402–404 and the texts nr. 1–6, 8–11 in the same volume). In Autumn 1893 he abandoned the book plan to pursue descriptive psychological investigations. After a caesura in early 1894, Husserl devoted most of the year to his text on Twardowski. The only dark period is 1895 (from late 1894 to early 1896), where theoretically the text in question would fit; however, Husserl must have been distracted in this period, since his second son was born in November 1895. He also interrupted work on the Prolegomena to write various reviews of recent logical literature, but of course Lotze’s well-known Logik (first published in 1874) would not qualify for such a review.

  34. See BW IX, 16 or 13.

  35. Husserl refers to „Krebs Vierteljahr. 1897“ (1a). O. Krebs’ Der Wissenschaftsbegriff bei H. Lotze was published in the Vierteljahresschrift für wissenschaftliche Philosophie in three instalments between January and July 1897. Another reference, „Wundt, I 90.“ (1a), probably refers to the second edition of Wundt’s logic, published in 1893, where it would fit in the context of the epistemological problem discussed in Husserl’s manuscript, since in the first edition of 1880 this page belongs to a less specific context. Furthermore, Husserl owned a copy of the second edition (signature: BQ 514).

  36. Some of the pages have stenographic pencil annotations, which suggests that Husserl revised the text when it was no longer considered for immediate publication, although these annotations could have been written after Husserl had the text in hand during the printing of the Prolegomena.

  37. In this transcript Lotze figures in the context of discussions of the theory of vision: Ms. Q 9/6, 8 (Lotze’s theory of local signs), 38 (Lotze’s interpretation of Berkeley), 49 (Lotze’s position regarding Molyneux’s problem), 55 (muscle sensations), 68 (blind spot). All of these points are covered by Stumpf’s presentation, in which detailed coverage of Lotze’s theory of local signs is found.

  38. Rollinger (1999, 83 ff.), Schuhmann (2000/2001), and Ierna (2006, 66 ff.) belong to the small but growing number of studies that explore Stumpf’s pivotal role in the formation of Husserl’s thought.

  39. Ms. Q 14/112a, 114a.

  40. Husserl owned the third revised edition of it (Lotze 1876–1880).

  41. Lotze (1882b, 1884c). Husserl owned all of the posthumously published lecture notes of Lotze.

  42. Ms. Q 11 I/84 (basic faculties of the soul), 109 (are there unconscious contents in the soul), 178 (muscle sensations), 215 (nerve energies), 310–311 (classification of acts in the context of tone psychology). There is also a general reference to Lotze in the beginning of the lecture (58), together with a shorter quotation, that the hypotheses of empirical psychology are ephemeral (the reference is missing, but it is from p. vi of the Preface to Lotze (1852)).

  43. Ms. Q 11 II/423–432, see also 413–414, 420.

  44. Only Husserl’s attendance of Stumpf’s logic lecture in the summer semester and of Stumpf’s psychology lecture in the winter semester is documented (Schuhmann 1977, 17, 19); apparently there is no more recent evidence. Cf. Gerlach (1994, 21), Rollinger (1999, 87), Schuhmann (2000/2001, 63), but based on Husserl’s notes it seems probable that he continued to attend Stumpf’s psychology lecture in the summer semester as well.

  45. Husserl (1994, 184). Husserl was examined by Stumpf himself, the mathematician Cantor, and Hermann Knoblauch, an experimental physicist at the University.

  46. See Willard (1984, 30 ff.). Elsewhere I have discussed Husserl’s notes on Lotze’s theory of relations in the context of the study of Husserl’s earliest notion of intentionality and have argued that Husserl was disturbed by what he believed was the moment of active stand-taking (Stellung) by consciousness in Lotze’s theory of relations (Varga 2008, 43).

  47. Hua XII, 78; cf. 334 ff.

  48. His attitude towards excerpting the literature is well captured in his diary: „Es ist mir unbegreiflich, daß ich Beneke im Sommer gelesen habe, ohne zu notieren. […] Man vergißt doch immer wieder.“ (Ms. X X III/5; entry from October 19, 1893).

  49. Husserl’s references to Lotze in marginal notes of books he read for his geometry project clearly anchor his knowledge of Lotze’s discussions of spatial perception to his occupations with the book on space. On October 20, 1893, in the course of his literature research, Husserl read the fifth chapter of B. Kerry’s posthumous monograph (Kerry 1890; see Schuhmann 1977, 37), and on page 118 of Husserl’s copy there is a pencil marginal note “Lotze” (signature: BQ 223). In Husserl’s copy of Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason there is a reference, at the first paralogism of substantiality (Kant 1878, 297), to Lotze’s discussion of it in his Metaphysik (Husserl’s reference is to Lotze 1879, 482 ff). In the course of his excerpts (Ms. K I 34/30b) Husserl refers to Beyersdorff (1879, 28 ff.), where Robert Beyersdorff makes an explicit reference to §§ 103 and 104 of Lotze’s Metaphysik. The entire book—a dissertation discussing various contemporary theories of space—shows traces of reading by Husserl, but he has misspelled Beyersdorff name in the excerpt, which even K. Schuhmann could not recognise in his Index Nominum. See Schuhmann (1975, 62).

  50. See Ms. K I 34/30a. Husserl refers to „Vaih. Com. 213“ and „Com. 213“ (the references are organic parts of the excerpt). Vaihinger’s two-volume commentary, published in 1881 and 1892, was in Husserl’s possession (signature: BQ 487). Husserl did not provide a volume number, but it is the second volume; Husserl’s page number refers to Vaihinger’s discussion of Kant’s fourth (really, third) argument on space. On this page (Vaihinger 1892, 213) Vaihinger presents Lotze’s arguments connected to this problem and gives references to the secondary literature, including references to Riehl, Cohen and Trendelenburg, which are noted by Husserl at the same manuscript page.

  51. The new stage of Husserl’s acquaintance with Lotze is already visible from his notes on abstraction in Ms. A III 1/69a–70a, where he refers to pp. 44, 48 and 53 of Lotze’s Logik (Ms. A III 1/70a; Lotze (1880, 44) and other surrounding pages are marked by Husserl “NB”). This note is explicitly dated by Husserl October 5, 1895.

  52. Many aspects of the content of seem to suggest that the text—or at least its first fragment—was in fact a direct part of the elaboration of § 59 of Prolegomena. However, I do not intend to press these (indirect) signs in the content too much, preferring the results of the above philological dating. Even if it has ancestors in the early 1890s, the text itself cannot have been written earlier than Husserl’s turn in mid-1894 or, more likely, during his work on the Prolegomena and other parts of the Logical Investigations.

  53. This is consistent with Husserl’s portrayal of Herbart in the Prolegomena. See esp. Hua XVIII, 47, 50, 220 ff., 262, where Husserl accuses Herbart of founding pure logic on the normative function of logic. Husserl’s detailed presentation of Herbart in § 59 of the Prolegomena (Hua XVIII, 218 line 16–220 line 2) might stem directly from the missing first part of his discussion in Ms. K I 59, whose second part follows a similar style. Correspondingly, Husserl’s summary of Herbart’s shortcomings in the Prolegomena might be based on Husserl’s detailed presentation in Ms. K I 59/4a–5a (although some parts of it go beyond K I 59). Husserl’s laudation of Lotze in the Prolegomena—„Lotze, der manche Anregungen Herbarts aufgenommen, mit großem Scharfsinn durchdacht und originell weiter ausgeführt hat“ (Hua XVIII, 221 lines 23–24)—is also very close to what he has written in the manuscript: „Seine [Lotzes] tiefsinnigen Untersuchungen zeigen hier, wie sonst, den Einfluss Herbartscher Anregungen; aber die kraftvolle Selbstständigkeit und souveräne Freiheit, mit der er die Anregungen mit eigenen Gedankenreihen originell verarbeitete, lassen ihn auch hier als einen dem Meister ebenbürtigen Denker erkennen“ (5a). These similarities in content indicate that the ink manuscript might be a direct remnant of the underlying manuscript of § 59. If this is the case, then the process of composing § 59 could be reconstructed in the following way: Husserl abandoned the original manuscript elaboration after the presentation of Herbart, cutting off its top half to be sent to the printer and probably crossing out some sentences, as the last printed sentence (Hua XVIII, 220 line 2) does not fit with the sentence fragment on 4a. Then he summarised his critique of Herbart based on the original manuscripts and added new insights. Finally, after the introductory words on Lotze, he recognised that there was no more space to discuss him (or that his text was in need of further elaboration) and postponed it to a subsequent part of the work, later ad kalendas Graecas.

  54. Ms. K I 59/4a. This claim fits well in the context of Chapter 10 of the Prolgemena, where in §§ 58–60 Husserl enumerates those who he thinks are precursors of his philosophical enterprise.

  55. The non-stenographic text (Ms. K I 59/4a–24a) is not homogeneous (e.g. the text restarts at least at 11a and 23a; 19a is an excursus that is not marked as a Beilage). In the following I will focus on the first continuous fragment (Ms. K I 59/4a–10a) that is most relevant for the purpose of Husserl’s confrontation with Lotze’s epistemology. The fact that Ms. K I 59/4a–24a is fragmented, and that its fragmentary character increases and the grade of elaborateness decreases in the latter part of the text, further suggests that it is a remnant of the abandoned text of the Prolegomena.

  56. Husserl (Ms. K I 59/5a) quotes Lotze (1880, 15). He is apparently pleased to state the coincidences between Lotze’s theory of presentations and his own antipsychologistic approach, which also seems to confirm that the text originally belonged to Chapter 10 of the Prolegomena.

  57. Lotze (1880, 507–508 and 509) is quoted on Ms. K I 59/6a.

  58. Ms. K I 59/6a–7a. Husserl did not specify the source of his quotation, but it is Lotze (1880, 511–513). In the next sentence Husserl has also quoted, approvingly, Lotze’s interpretation of Plato as a forerunner of his own theory (Lotze 1880, 513 on Ms. K I 59/7a).

  59. Lotze (1880, 519–520) quoted by Husserl on Ms. K I 59/8a.

  60. Lotze intended to complete this system with a volume on ethics, but this intention was still unfulfilled when he died suddenly after being invited to the University of Berlin in 1881.

  61. Ms. K I 59/10a (disregarding a later, stenographic alteration).

  62. Hua XIX/2, 728–729 (italicisation in original, letter spacing dropped).

  63. Cf. Hua Mat III, 197 and 196 n. 1.

  64. Hua Mat III, 197, 196 n. 1 (crossed-out text).

  65. The typescript is filed under the signature Ms. M III 9 III/1–6; Landgrebe became Husserl’s assistant in WS 1922/23.

  66. As we saw, around the first edition of the Logical Investigations Husserl usually voices a dismissive opinion of Lotze. But as the years passed, he came to admit Lotze’s merits, his specifically phenomenological insights. Already in the draft preface of 1913 he praised Lotze for helping him discover consciousness as an independent field (see Hua XX/1, 303 f.), and six years later, in the SS 1919 Natur und Geist lecture, Lotze appears as a forerunner of the phenomenological claim of the inherently perspectival character of perception (Hua Mat IV, 191; the sentence Husserl alluded to is probably Lotze (1880, 497)). Of course, Lotze should not be made out to be a proto-phenomenologist (as Husserl energetically protested in Ideas III), but Husserl’s more positive view is not unfounded, as it seems that Lotze helped Husserl to arrive at specific phenomenological insights: See Ms. A VI 13/2 concerning Lotze’s possible influence on Husserl’s theory of fulfilment, and Hua X, 19 on Lotze’s stance in the contemporary debate on whether the perception of temporally distributed objects is itself temporally distributed. The latter aspect has been noted in recent scholarly literature on Husserl’s phenomenology of time consciousness. See de Warren (2005, 95, 108). Husserl also included a condensed critique of Lotze’s epistemological problem in the 1913 draft preface to the Logical Investigations (Hua XX/1, 306–307; see my note above), and similar claims resurface in the early Freiburg years: in Husserl’s work on his inaugural lecture (see Hua XXV, 143) and in his WS 1919/20 Einleitung in die Philosophie lecture (Ms. F I 40/3a, 264a; cf. Hua Mat IX, 272 ff.). This latter is embedded in Husserl’s discussion of Lotze’s general stance on epistemological circularities, which I investigate in Sect. 5 below.

  67. Schuhmann (1977, 169).

  68. Lotze’s essay was translated into English in The Contemporarian Review, which was not a specifically philosophical journal, and the German original was lost.

  69. Lotze (1879, 15); cf. his autobiographical essay (Lotze 1885–1891, vol. III/2 479). This was a favourite quotation of Heidegger.

  70. Lotze (1880, 489).

  71. Lotze (1880, 525).

  72. Ms. B II 18/60–70 is assigned to Husserl’s SS 1912 seminar (presumably as Husserl’s preparation notes) by Schuhmann (1977, 168). I doubt this claim, based on what is written on the inner cover: „Lotze Halle“ (Ms. B II 18/60a), and „[Seiten] 1–3 wohl zu L.U. I.“ (ibid., Edith Stein’s handwriting). So I think that these pages (Ms. B II 18/61–63) represent Husserl’s notes for himself during the time he first encountered Lotze’s stance on circularities, i.e., in the context of criticizing Lotze’s stance on the formal and real significance of logical laws. This is confirmed by the fact that the remaining pages contain Husserl’s notes on that stance (Edith Stein’s assignment of these pages to Ideas II is probably based on their content). Schuhmann’s other hint (Ms. F I 42/26–28) might be related to the seminar, although I would classify it only as preparation notes, rather than Husserl’s record of the actual content of the discussion.

  73. See Hua XVIII, 96; Hua XXIV, 200 (this will be discussed below); Hua VIII, 262; Hua XVII, 169.

  74. Husserl wrote “Lotze” in the margin at a sentence in the discussion of Leibniz: „[Leibniz] die Prüfung unserer Erkenntniskraft nicht für die erste, alle anderen philosophischen Untersuchungen bedingende Aufgabe der Philosophie hielt, sondern für eine solche, die mit Erfolg nur dann behandelt werden könne, wenn vorher schon manches Andere festgestellt sei; in ähnlicher Art hat in der nachkantischen Zeit wiederum Herbart geurtheilt“ (Reicke 1875, 98). Husserl’s copy was obtained during his study in Leipzig in 1877 (see his possession notice on the inner cover). The presentation of Kant and German Idealism shows heavy signs of reading, but there is no such sign at Lotze’s presentation (see 341).

  75. Adolf Grimme studied with Husserl in Göttingen in 1910–1914. He was later elevated to high rank in the Prussian education administration (minister for education between 1930 and 1932). Some of his early writings were devoted to propagating Husserl’s philosophy (see e.g. BW III, 70 ff., esp. 84), and in his function as a minister he contributed to Husserl’s financial support of Fink (see e.g. BW III, 89 ff., 92, 96). His close friendship with the Husserl family was maintained even after Grimme’s forced suspension from office and pensioning in 1932–1933.

  76. Ms. BSB München Ana 385 (Sammlung Phaenomenologica) C I 3, Heft 8, 10–11 (unnumbered). Transcription and textual emendations (in angle brackets) have been provided by the present author (italicisation: double underlining in original).

  77. If Schuhmann’s hint is to be accepted (see my note above), then this thesis has its parallel among Husserl’s notes in the last sentences of Ms. F I 42/27a.

  78. Marginal note at 130 of Husserl’s copy of Erdmann (1877) (signature: BQ 126). According to Husserl’s possession notice, he acquired this book in May 1886, so he could have read it very early.

  79. This passage is, „Die Untersuchung bewegt sich gleichsam im Zickzack; und dieses Gleichnis paßt umso besser, als man, vermöge der innigen Abhängigkeit der verschiedenen Erkenntnisbegriffe, immer wieder zu den ursprünglichen Analysen zurückkehren und sie an den neuen sowie die neuen an ihnen bewähren muß“ (Hua XIX/1, 22 lines 31 ff.; cf. Hua XIX/2, 552 lines 12 ff. and Hua VI, 123 lines 16 ff.). This passage must have been important for Husserl, as he explicitly mentioned it in his large-scale methodological attempt, the 1922/1923 Einleitung in die Philosophie lecture (see Hua XXXV, 94).

  80. Hua XIX/2, 792. Husserl’s reference is to Lotze (1880, 542), where Lotze starts to present his program of the critique of presuppositions, quoted above in Sect. 5.1.


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The first version of this article was written during a research stay at the Husserl Archive of the University of Cologne which was supported by the “Eötvös” Scholarship of the Hungarian State, while I was employed by the Institute of Philosophy of the Research Centre for the Humanities of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. I am especially grateful to Prof. Dr. Dieter Lohmar and Dr. Dirk Fonfara for their kind help, advice, and assistance throughout my work, and to Ina Marie Weber, M.A. for her help with stenography. Dr. Thomas Vongehr of the Husserl Archive at the Catholic University in Leuven kindly assisted me during my shorter stay in Leuven, for which I am also grateful. I am grateful to Prof. Dr. Ullrich Melle, director of the Husserl Archive in Leuven, for his kind permission to quote from the unpublished manuscripts of Husserl.

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Varga, P.A. The Missing Chapter from the Logical Investigations: Husserl on Lotze’s Formal and Real Significance of Logical Laws. Husserl Stud 29, 181–209 (2013).

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  • Logical Investigation
  • Real Significance
  • Circular Explanation
  • Terminus Post Quem
  • Husserl Scholarship