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179 Doctrines: Basic Principles have no secondary qualities. Colour, sound, taste, and smell are qualities of aggregates, not of single atoms. To ascribe one of those qualities to a subject is to describe that subject as so structured as to prompt a certain sensory response in a certain kind of perceiver; and 'so structured' is cashed out in a description of the underlying structure in terms of the intrinsic properties (shape and size) and relational properties (arrangement and orientation) of its constituent atoms. The persuasiveness or otherwise of the account of the secondary qualities cannot be separated from that of the whole theory of perception of which it is part, and that in turn from the theory of human nature, and ultimately of the natural world as a whole. As presented by the atomists, the theory is entirely speculative, since it posits as explanatory entities microscopic structures of whose existence and nature there could be no experimental confirmation. Modern developments in sciences such as neurophysiology have revised our conceptions of the structures underlying perceptual phenomena to such an extent that modern accounts would have been unrecognizable to Leucippus or Democritus; but the basic intuitions of ancient atomism, that appearances are to be explained at the level of the internal structure of the perceiver and of the perceived object, and that the ideal of science is to incorporate the description of those structures within the scope of a unified and quantitatively precise theory of the nature of matter in general, have stood the test of time. Weight A great deal of scholarly ink has been spilt on the question of whether the atoms of Leucippus and Democritus had weight. As with the question of divisibility, the problem arises from a conflict of testimony in our sources. While the great majority of sources agree in ascribing weight to the atoms, two passages of Aetius (60a, b) contradict this tradition. The former (followed by Eusebius PE XIV.14.5) states that while Democritus said that there were two primary properties of the atoms, Epicurus added a third, viz. weight; the latter says that Democritus denied that the primary bodies had weight, but said that they were moved by mutual impact in the void. On the other side the tradition is unanimous and clear. Aristotle asserts explicitly (48a) that 'Democritus says that each of the indivisibles is heavier in proportion to its greater size' and uses this feature of the theory to contrast atomism favourably with the theory of the Timaeus, according to which the primary physical elements are not solids but planes (56). The direct proportionality of atomic weight to size is confirmed by two passages of Theophrastus (113 (61) and (71)). Simplicius reports (61b) that all atoms have weight, which is the cause of their movement through the void (59b:

The Atomists -- Leucippus and Democritus  

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The Atomists -- Leucippus and Democritus  

MACEDONIA is GREECE and will always be GREECE- (if they are desperate to steal a name, Monkeydonkeys suits them just fine) ΦΕΚ,ΚΚΕ,ΚΝΕ,ΚΟΜΜ...

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