Every universal except for the most general of genera, can be said to be “composed” out of a genus and a differentia.
It is evident that every Member of a Species is also a Member of the Genus out of which that Species has been picked, and that it possesses the Differentia of that Species.
It was traditionally supposed that a species could be uniquely specified or defined in terms of a genus and a differentia.
Associated with this, as with every differentia, is a ‘maximal sentence’ (maxima propositio), in this case: ‘equal things are to be judged equally.’
In fact, the essence of any species, according to Aristotle, consists in its genus and the differentia that together with that genus defines the species.
(The same relation is claimed to occur between non-repeatable ‘qualities’ (guṇa) and substances, a whole and its parts, and the basic differentia and the atoms.)
Evidently we need to be told that none of them are in Class (2); i.e. that none of them are Members of the Class whose Differentia is contradictory to that of the Predicate.
Consequently Wyclif speaks of a formal difference (distinctio or differentia formalis) — which he also calls a ‘difference of reason’ (distinctio rationis) — between essence and being.
Later commentators listed these four and the differentia as the five predicables, and as such they were of great importance to late ancient and to medieval philosophy (e.g., Porphyry).
If we think of a certain Class, and imagine that we have picked out from it a certain smaller Class, it is evident that the Remainder of the large Class does not possess the Differentia of that smaller Class.
In this case, the Class “Things” is called a ‘Genus’ with regard to the Class so formed: the Class, so formed, is called a ‘Species’ of the Class “Things”: and its peculiar Adjunct is called its ‘Differentia’.
In this case, the Class thought of is called a ‘Genus’ with regard to the smaller Class picked out from it: the smaller Class is called a ‘Species’ of the larger: and its peculiar Adjunct is called its ‘Differentia’.
Throughout the scholastic and modern periods the genus-species and genus-differentia relations are often treated in what Prior (1949) calls “a confused blending” of the conjunct-conjunction and determination relations.
A species is defined by giving its genus (genos) and its differentia (diaphora): the genus is the kind under which the species falls, and the differentia tells what characterizes the species within that genus.
In his Eisagoge, Porphyry established five universal “meanings”: genus, species, differentia, property, and accident, as the foundations of logic, the first element of a chain, the highest development of which is the syllogism.
For a species is defined in terms of its subsuming genus and differentia (e.g., man is definable as an animal that is rational), and while the genus (animal) may be predicated of the species (man), it may not be predicated of the differentia (rational).
in the substantial transmutation of metals and thought that the “differentia specifica” of metals could be produced during an artificial process, which in the end would always lead to the transformation of lead and other base metals into precious metals gold and silver.
If Leibniz brought consistency into the medieval view of the distinctness of genus and differentia by making the relation between them symmetrical, Spinoza brought consistency into the medieval view of the asymmetry of the relation between them by denying their distinctness.
To avoid the problems created by this dichotomous and arbitrary method, Aristotle recommends a method that divides each differentia by more and more determinate forms of that differentia, and does so simultaneously on as many differentiae as are correlated at a given level of universality.
If it turns out that we can't specify the right sort of differentia for these relations, another proposal according to which grounding is both unitary and variegated worth considering is this: grounding tout court is a determinable, and the various fine-grained grounding relations are determinates of this determinable.
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If it turns out that we can't specify the right sort of differentia for these relations another proposal according to which grounding is both unitary and variegated worth considering is this grounding tout court is a determinable and the various fine-grained grounding relations are determinates of this determinable