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A phenomenalist philosophy which employs the Principle of Acquaintance (PA) plus the Principle that what exists are the referents of certain meaningful terms, defined by PA, cannot include either universals or particulars in its ontology, but is limited to instances of universals as constituting the range of ontological existents. Universals must be omitted since they are repeatable and, hence, never wholly presented or contained, whereas the objects of direct acquaintance are wholly and exhaustively presented. Furthermore, no entities beyond characters (qualities and relations) are given in direct acquaintance; hence, particulars, too, must be omitted for the phenomenalist who relies on PA.
Philosophy of Science © 1960 The University of Chicago Press