Aitiai as Middle Terms


  • Boris Hennig Toronto Metropolitan University



Aristotle, causes, Avicenna, Posterior analytics


Aristotle’s aitiai (‘causes’) are middle terms in Aristotelian syllogisms. I argue that stating the aitia of a thing therefore amounts to re-describing this same thing in an alternative and illuminating way. This, in turn, means that a thing and its aitiai really are one and the same thing under different descriptions. The purpose of this paper is to show that this view is implied by Aristotle’s account of explanation, and that it makes more sense than one might expect.


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How to Cite

Hennig, B. (2022). Aitiai as Middle Terms. Journal of Ancient Philosophy, 16(2), 126-148.