The Commens Dictionary

Quote from ‘Logic’


That part of logic, that is, of logica docens, which, setting out with such assumptions as that every assertion is either true or false, and not both, and that some propositions may be recognized to be true, studies the constituent parts of arguments and produces a classification of arguments such as is above described, is often considered to embrace the whole of logic; but a more correct designation is Critic (Greek {kritiké}. According to Diogenes Laertius, Aristotle divided logic into three parts, of which one was {pros krisin}). This word, used by Plato (who divides all knowledge into epitactic and critic), was adopted into Latin by the Ramists, and into English by Hobbes and Locke. From the last it was taken into German by Kant, who always writes it Critik, the initial c being possibly a reminiscence of its English origin. At present it is written Kritik in German. Kant is emphatic in the expression of the wish that the word may not be confounded with critique, a critical essay (German Kritik).

DPP 2:21; CP 2.205
‘Critic’ (pub. 27.01.13-09:31). Quote in M. Bergman & S. Paavola (Eds.), The Commens Dictionary: Peirce's Terms in His Own Words. New Edition. Retrieved from
Jan 27, 2013, 09:31 by Sami Paavola
Last revised: 
Aug 11, 2017, 08:17 by Mats Bergman