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Logic & Scientific Philosophy

Categorical Syllogism

Categorical Syllogism

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Birds can fly.

Penguins are Birds.

Therefore, Penguins can Fly.

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Categorical Syllogism ~

Terms: Birds are the middle term, flying is the predicate term, and penguins are the subject term of the statement.

Examination: The truth in this statement is that birds can fly and that penguins are in fact birds. Its a valid statement however, the premesis is false therefore this is not a sound argument.

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “Categorical Syllogism

  1. When you say “Birds can fly” do you mean “All birds can fly” or “Some birds can fly”? If you do not specify, you are being vague.

    The syllogism “All birds can fly, all penguins are birds, thus all penguins can fly” is valid – it has the proper form – but unsound, because the first premise (that all birds can fly) is false.

    The syllogism “Some birds can fly, all penguins are birds, thus, all penguins can fly” is invalid. Even though the premises are both true, the conclusion does not follow from the premise.

    Posted by Stephen Downes | October 3, 2012, 7:13 pm
  2. I’m saying that all birds can fly. I guess I’m just a vague person when it comes to being specific on statements. I’m also using a statement that a child would say and not a grade 12 student. In the eyes of a child, the first premise (that all birds can fly) is entirely true.

    Posted by mrflyingpenguin | October 4, 2012, 6:12 am

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