To Exist and to Count

  • Francesco Berto
Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 356)


The philosophers we are about to meet have reinforced the Parmenidean position in two moves: (1) they have expanded the slogan “Existence is not a predicate” into the thesis that existence is (nothing but) property-instantiation; (2) they have also explained existence in terms of the logical notion of quantification. Both moves were made mainly by Frege and, derivatively, by Russell. The second is especially popular among contemporary analytic philosophers for having been embraced by Quine, who developed it into his so-called “criterion of ontological commitment”.


Ontological Commitment Definite Description Order Property Number Word Existential Quantifier 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Francesco Berto
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Philosophy and Northern Institute of PhilosophyUniversity of AberdeenAberdeenUK

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