Studia Logica

, Volume 105, Issue 4, pp 761–786 | Cite as

Relativised Homomorphism Preservation at the Finite Level

  • Lucy Ham


In this article, we investigate the status of the homomorphism preservation property amongst restricted classes of finite relational structures and algebraic structures. We show that there are many homomorphism-closed classes of finite lattices that are definable by a first-order sentence but not by existential positive sentences, demonstrating the failure of the homomorphism preservation property for lattices at the finite level. In contrast to the negative results for algebras, we establish a finite-level relativised homomorphism preservation theorem in the relational case. More specifically, we give a complete finite-level characterisation of first-order definable finitely generated anti-varieties relative to classes of relational structures definable by sentences of some general forms. When relativisation is dropped, this gives a fresh proof of Atserias’s characterisation of first-order definable constraint satisfaction problems over a fixed template, a well known special case of Rossman’s Finite Homomorphism Preservation Theorem.


Lattice Relational structure Constraint satisfaction problem Homomorphism preservation Antivariety 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and StatisticsLa Trobe UniversityVictoriaAustralia

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