Paul of Venice on a Puzzle About Uncertainty
Uckelman, Sara L. (Tilburg Center for Logic and Philosophy of Science Tilburg University)
Paper given at the Logic and Interactive Rationality seminar, Tilburg, The Netherlands, 15 March (2012)
Treatises on logic from the high Middle Ages (13th–15th C) often discuss reasoning and inferences involving epistemic terms such as ‘know’, ‘believe’, ‘consider’, ‘under- stand’, ‘notice’, etc. While epistemic logic in this period has hitherto not been widely studied, both the similarities and the differences between medieval epistemic logic and modern epistemic logic make it a fruitful field for research. In this paper we consider a particular epistemic puzzle about uncertainty from the late 14th/early 15th century. We provide the necessary context and background information on medieval epistemology and implicit principles used in epistemic reasoning to provide a formal reconstruction of a specific argument and its counter argument, using this as a case study to highlight interesting features of medieval epistemic logic.