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By Paul Elbourne

This publication argues that certain descriptions ('the table', 'the King of France') confer with participants, as Gottlob Frege claimed. This it appears uncomplicated end flies within the face of philosophical orthodoxy, which contains Bertrand Russell's thought that convinced descriptions are units of quantification. Paul Elbourne offers the 1st fully-argued defence of the Fregean view. He builds an particular fragment of English utilizing a model of state of affairs semantics. He makes use of intrinsic elements of his procedure to account for the presupposition projection behaviour of sure descriptions, various modal houses, and the matter of incompleteness. even as, he attracts on an strangely wide selection of linguistic and philosophical literature, from early paintings by way of Frege, Peano, and Russell to the newest findings in linguistics, philosophy of language, and psycholinguistics. His penultimate bankruptcy addresses the semantics of pronouns and gives a brand new and extra radical model of his previous thesis that they too are Fregean sure descriptions.

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Definite Descriptions

This publication argues that certain descriptions ('the table', 'the King of France') discuss with members, as Gottlob Frege claimed. This it seems that basic end flies within the face of philosophical orthodoxy, which contains Bertrand Russell's idea that convinced descriptions are units of quantification.

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S . x f (x)(s ) = 1. x f (x)(s ) = 1. Îs . Îs . Îs . there is a situation s such that s is a minimal situation such that s ≤ s and s ≤ s and f (x)(s ) = 1 sometimes = Îp s,t . Îq s,st . Îs . there is a situation s such that s is a minimal situation such that s ≤ s and p(s ) = 1, such that q (s )(s ) = 1 always = Îp s,t . Îq s,st . Îs . Îs . there is a situation s such that s is a minimal situation such that s ≤ s and s ≤ s and p(s ) = 1 who = Î f e,st . f if = Îp s,t . p These lexical entries will be put into action in Chapters 3, 6, and 7.

4. Systems should respect Generalizations X and Y of Percus (2000). 5. They should respect the generalization about Predicate Modification uncovered by Keshet (2008, 2010b). The system laid out in the current chapter can arguably meet all of these requirements. I will now briefly report on the performance of the current system with regard to each of these benchmarks with the aim of justifying this scorecard. It would take us too far afield to provide detailed discussions of all the relevant phenomena, however; the original sources just quoted should be consulted for full details.

Why can names not appear as the postcopular DP in there-sentences (Milsark 1977), for example? This kind of worry crops up all over the place, not least with definite descriptions. 22 What do I mean by individuals here? I mean thin particulars. It would also be possible to assume that thick particulars appear in more than one possible world. But thick particulars are situations and it turns out to be useful to be able to refer to ‘the maximal element s is related to by ≤’, for arbitrary situations s , as in item 5 above, since this helps with the semantics for counterfactual conditionals, as we will see in (43) in Chapter 7.

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