Should Old Aquinas Be Forgot…

Oh, this is very good:

Should old Aquinas be forgot
And never brought to mind?
Should old Aquinas be forgot
In these days of Wittgenstein?

Can quiddity, haececity,
Analogies divine,
Resolve the paradoxes of
Willard van Orman Quine?

[via, via]

0 thoughts on “Should Old Aquinas Be Forgot…”

  1. Very good indeed. It reminded me of Dr Eric Mascall’s squib which might amuse the theologically minded among your readers:

    ‘Hark, the herald angels sing:
    ‘Bultmann is the latest thing!’
    [Or they would if he had not
    Demythologised the lot.]
    Joyful, all ye nations rise,
    Glad to existentialise!
    Peace on earth and mercy mild,
    God and Science reconciled.’

  2. Im not surprised to learn that that this ditty on Aquinaswas a favorite of the late great Dominican (and Marx sympathizer) Herbert McCabe.
    Ialos really like the Eric Mascall piece.

  3. Most amusing. It does make me curious what Kenny actually used to sing. Surely he wouldn’t ascribe a Scotist concept -haecceitas – to Aquinas.

  4. I had heard that Alan Ross Anderson (a former logic teacher of mine) composed this one morning while hung over at an APA meeting when he found a piano in one of the meeting rooms.

    Further verses include:

    Oh hesperus and phosphorus it really is a bitch
    Oh, ought we not throw in our lot
    With Smullyan, Chruch and Fitch?
    Or ought we groan, “Ah, Quine alone,”
    Can tell us which is which?

    There is another verse that I believe refers to Anscombe and ends

    Oh, ought we all to speak the speech
    We learned at mother’s knee?
    Or ought we all reverse ourselves
    And write the backwards “E”?

    It concludes:

    Oh A. H. Veach and P. T. Geach
    We really must berate
    For the subject with the predicate
    They leave to copulate
    intentions pure they can’t secure with
    Frege, Russell, Boole
    By treating dear old Barbara
    With some symbolic tool.

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