[Ads-l] Request: Source of quote by Aristotle

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Sat Jan 15 20:53:35 EST 2022


The point you raise resonates with a more widely cited (and considerably
more recent) observation on etymology:

In most, if not in all, languages, the etymology of the word which
corresponds to “just” points distinctly to an origin connected with the
ordinances of law. *Justum* is a form of *jussum*, that which has been
ordered. *Dikaion* comes directly from *dike*, a suit at law. *Recht*, from
which came *right* and *righteous*, is synonymous with law. The courts of
justice, the administration of justice, are the courts and the
administration of law. *La justice*, in French, is the established term for
judicature. I am not committing **the fallacy* *imputed with some show of
truth to Horne Tooke,* *of assuming that a word must still continue to mean
what it originally meant. Etymology is slight evidence of what the idea now
signified is, but the very best evidence of how it sprang up.** There can,
I think, be no doubt that the *idee mère*, the primitive element, in the
formation of the notion of justice, was conformity to law.
            —John Stuart Mill,* Utilitarianism, *1861; emphasis added

On Sat, Jan 15, 2022 at 8:29 PM Cohen, Gerald Leonard <gcohen at mst.edu>
wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Thanks, Garson.  Much appreciated.  Btw, I'm interested in this quote
> because it seems entirely
> relevant to etymology.
>
> Gerald
>
> ________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of
> ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
> Sent: Saturday, January 15, 2022 6:44 PM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Subject: Re: Request: Source of quote by Aristotle
>
> There is a solid match within the translation of Aristotle's Politics
> by Benjamin Jowett.
>
> Year: 1885
> Book Title: The Politics of Aristotle
> Translator: Benjamin Jowett
> Publisher: Oxford at the Clarendon Press
> Book 1
> Quote Page 2
>
>
> https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fbooks.google.com%2Fbooks%3Fid%3DUPU70NrxY80C%26q%3D%2522first%2Bgrowth%2522%23v%3Dsnippet%26&data=04%7C01%7Cgcohen%40MST.EDU%7C21436d6f2ffa4456597f08d9d8896732%7Ce3fefdbef7e9401ba51a355e01b05a89%7C0%7C0%7C637778907064671522%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C3000&sdata=mxu67caeIq7NGC%2BHiNzIRzFT%2FuLw%2FU2lBGB5i5epM2M%3D&reserved=0
>
> [Begin excerpt]
> He who thus considers things in their first growth and origin, whether
> a state or anything else, will obtain the clearest view of them.
> [End excerpt]
>
> Garson
>
> On Sat, Jan 15, 2022 at 5:54 PM Cohen, Gerald Leonard <gcohen at mst.edu>
> wrote:
> >
> > I'd be grateful if someone would tell me the specific source of
> Aristotle's quote
> > "He who sees things grow from the beginning will have the best view of
> them."
> >
> > Gerald Cohen
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
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