The Commens Dictionary

Quote from ‘Preface’


Whether the object immediately before the mind is the Real object or not seems to be a question from which it is difficult to extract any clear meaning; but it [is] quite certain that no thinking about it will at all modify the Real object, since this is precisely what is meant by calling it Real. It is sometimes an object shaped by thinking, – of which the last sentence affords an example; but so far as it is Real, it is not modified by thinking about it. Now in thinking, the object before the mind is under the thinker’s control and is always modified by the action of his will. It is therefore not the Real thing, although the Real thing is undoubtedly the object he is thinking about.

MS [R] 634:9-10
‘Real’ (pub. 25.11.15-00:24). Quote in M. Bergman & S. Paavola (Eds.), The Commens Dictionary: Peirce's Terms in His Own Words. New Edition. Retrieved from
Nov 25, 2015, 00:24 by Mats Bergman