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De Motu, Section One

25 September, 2015 - 15:08

In the pursuit of truth we must beware of being misled by terms which we do not rightly understand. That is the chief point. Almost all philosophers utter the caution; few observe it. Yet it is not so difficult to observe where sense, expe- rience, and geometrical reasoning obtain, as is especially the case in physics. Laying aside, then, as far as possible, all prejudice, whether rooted in linguistic usage or in philosophical authority, let us fix our gaze on the very nature of things. For no one’s authority ought to rank so high as to set a value on his words and terms unless they are found to be based on clear and certain fact.