Attributives, Their First Denotative Correlates, Complex Predicates and Free Logics

Part of the Nijhoff International Philosophy Series book series (NIPS, volume 53)


English words and phrases of adjectival, verbal, or prepositional form fall in the class of expressions traditionally called attributive terms; this is the class of expressions “purport(ing)... to apply to things”.1 Examples are ‘courageous’, ‘studies’, and ‘next to’. English nouns and noun phrases fall in the class of expressions traditionally called denotative terms; this is the class of expressions “purport(ing) to refer to things”.2 Examples are ‘Russell’, ‘the author of “On Denoting’”, ‘courageous things’ and ‘philosopher’. Of particular interest here are pairs of expressions such as the attributive term ‘courageous’ and the denotative term ‘courageous things’. The second member of this pair is the first denotative correlate of the attributive term ‘courageous’. (Attributives also have second denotative correlates. These are abstract terms that purport to name the property in virtue of which a certain thing is such and such, ‘courage’, for example is the second denotative correlate of the attributive ‘courageous’.) For every attributive term there is a first denotative correlate which can be regimented as an expression of the form ‘object x such that x is...’, where ‘...’ is replaced by that attributive term.


Noun Phrase Formal Language Singular Term Virtual Object Outer Domain 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Bencivenga, E. and Lambert, K. 1986: “A Free Logic with Simple and Complex Predicates”, Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 27, 247–256.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Fraassen, B. van 1967: “Meaning Relations Among Predicates”, Nous 1, 161–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Leonard, H. 1964: “Essences, Attributes and Predicates”, Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association, University of Delaware Press, Newark, Delaware.Google Scholar
  4. Leonard, H. 1967: Principles of Reasoning, Dover, New York.Google Scholar
  5. Meyer, R.K. and Lambert, K. 1968: “Universally Free Logic and Standard Quantification Theory”, The Journal of Symbolic Logic 33, 8–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Schoenman, R. 1967: Bertrand Russell: Philosopher of the Century, Little, Brown and Co., Boston.Google Scholar
  7. Scott, D. 1967: “Existence and Description in Formal Logic”, in Schoenman 1967, 181–200.Google Scholar
  8. Skyrms, B. 1968: “Supervaluations: Identity, Existence and Individual Concepts”, The Journal of Philosophy 64, 477–483.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Williams, C.J.F. 1981: What Is Existence?, Clarendon Press, Oxford.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1996

Authors and Affiliations

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations