The Commens Dictionary

Quote from ‘New Elements (Kaina stoiceia)’


If the cause […] is a part of the causatum, in the sense that the causatum could not logically be without the cause, it is called an internal cause; otherwise, it is called an external cause. If the cause is of the nature of an individual thing or fact, and the other factor requisite to the necessitation of the causatum is a general principle, I would call the cause a minor, or individuating, or perhaps a physical cause. [—] The individuating internal cause is called the material cause. Thus the integrant parts of a subject or fact form its matter, or material cause.

1904 [c.]
EP 2:315; NEM 4:252-3
‘Material Cause’ (pub. 23.07.15-14:58). Quote in M. Bergman & S. Paavola (Eds.), The Commens Dictionary: Peirce's Terms in His Own Words. New Edition. Retrieved from
Jul 23, 2015, 14:58 by Mats Bergman