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The Simple Bodies As Unities Of Quantity And Quality In Aristotle's On Generation And Corruption

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Chapter Summary

This chapter brings out two aspects of Aristotle’s famous argument in the second book of on Generation and Corruption concerning four opposite qualities and the primary bodies, the four elements, which they imply. It emphasizes those points in the text which consider the two categories, quantity and quality and relation of the two in action and passion. In on Generation and Corruption Aristotle deals with the coming to be and passing away of natural substances. This moves his consideration in direction of individual substances: the sense in which they also have stability, a distinction which is not immediately the whole. Author assumes that Aristotle introduces problems of quantity, quality, action, and passion in early part of this work to help us think through the primary elements and their oppositions. The chapter is a summary of three or four dense sections of the text on the way to this thinking.

Keywords: Aristotle; natural substances; on Generation and Corruption; primary bodies; primary elements; quantity and quality



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