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Thomas Spencer Baynes

(1823—1887) editor of the Encyclopaedia Britannica


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Thomas Spencer Baynes was born in Wellington, Somerset on 24 March 1823 and died in London on 31 May 1887. He was at various times Professor of Philosophy and English Literature at the University of St Andrews. Baynes's only notable philosophical publication was his Essay on Logical Forms. In 1846 this essay won a competition at the University of Edinburgh where Baynes was a student. Appearing some four years later with a laudatory ‘Introduction’ and ‘appendix’ by Sir William Hamilton, the Essay was seen by many as providing the best general account of Hamilton's logical theory. But, despite its careful explanation of the Hamiltonian doctrine of the syllogism, there is little that is original in the work. Most notable, perhaps, is Baynes's own Appendix (which at seventy-two pages is nearly as long as the original essay). In this Appendix Baynes traces the history of an idea central to Hamilton's theory – the ‘quantification of the predicate’.

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From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Philosophy.


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