2) In his account of signification of words regarding their ‘impositio’ Bacon accentuates the arbitrariness of meaning.[28] But even though the first ‘impositor’ (name-giver) is free to impose a word or sign on anything whatsoever, he does perform the act of imposition according to the paradigm of baptism: “all names which we impose on things we impose inasmuch as they are present to us, as in the case of names of people in Baptism”.[29] Contrary to the venerable tradition of Aristotelian, Boethian or Porphyrian Semantics,[30] holding that spoken words, at least immediately, signify mental concepts, Bacon favors the view that words, according to their imposition, immediately and properly signify the things themselves. With this account of linguistic signification Bacon abandons the model of the semantic triangle[31] and marks an important turning point on the way from the traditional intensionalist semantics to the extensionalist reference semantics as it became increasingly accepted in the 14th century.[

« Bacon abandons the model of the semantic triangle: words signify the things themselves »

A quote saved on July 2, 2015.


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