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Aquinas on Continuity and Identity

Aquinas on Continuity and Identity

Hughes, Christopher

Medieval Philosophy and Theology, vol. 6, no. 1 (1997)

Abstract

In what follows, I shall argue that there is a difficulty in fitting together Aquinas’s general account of the individuation of substances and their forms with his account of identity through time. Aquinas’s account of individuation entails that a certain condition is sufficient for identity. His account of identity through time entails that various other conditions are necessary for identity. ,If the first condition really is sufficient for identity, and the others really are necessary, then no pair of things can satisfy the first condition, without satisfying all the others. But, I shall show that there are pairs of things that satisfy the first condition, without satisfying the others.

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