more from Gottlob Frege

Single Idea 19468

[catalogued under 3. Truth / H. Deflationary Truth / 1. Redundant Truth]

Full Idea

The sentence 'I smell the scent of violets' has just the same content as 'It is true that I smell the scent of violets'. So it seems that nothing is added to the thought by my ascribing to it the property of truth.

Gist of Idea

The property of truth in 'It is true that I smell violets' adds nothing to 'I smell violets'


Gottlob Frege (The Thought: a Logical Enquiry [1918], p.328 (61))

Book Reference

Frege,Gottlob: 'The Frege Reader', ed/tr. Beaney,Michael [Blackwell 1997], p.328

A Reaction

This idea predates Ramsey's similar proposal, for which, oddly, Ramsey always seems to get the credit. To a logician they may have identical content, but pragmatically they are likely to differ in context. 'True' certainly doesn't add to the thought.