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Single Idea 11041

[catalogued under 6. Mathematics / B. Foundations for Mathematics / 5. Definitions of Number / b. Greek arithmetic]

Full Idea

Of quantities, some are discrete, others continuous. ...Discrete are number and language; continuous are lines, surfaces, bodies, and also, besides these, time and place.

Gist of Idea

Some quantities are discrete, like number, and others continuous, like lines, time and space


Aristotle (Categories [c.331 BCE], 04b20)

Book Reference

Aristotle: 'Categories and De Interpretatione', ed/tr. Ackrill,J.R. [OUP 1963], p.12

A Reaction

This distinction seems to me to be extremely illuminating, when comparing natural numbers with real numbers, and it is the foundation of the Greek view of mathematics.