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in- +‎ complex


incomplex (comparative more incomplex, superlative most incomplex)

  1. (especially philosophy) Not complex; simple.
    • 1742, William Derham, Physico-theology; Or, A Demonstration of the Being and Attributes of God, from His Works of Creation:
      And as the Ear is in Birds the most simple and incomplex of any Animals Ear; so we may from it make an easy and rational Judgment how Hearing is performed []
    • 1831, Isaac Barrow, “Sermon IV. Of Justifying Faith”, in The Works of Dr. Isaac Barrow: Sermons on the Apostles' creed:
      [] for otherwise, it is unintelligible how any incomplex thing, as they speak, can be the complete or immediate object of belief.
    • 1853, Ignoratio Elenchi, A Treatise on Logic, Not Exactly on the Basis of Aldrich, page 2:
      There are two kinds of simple apprehension, incomplex and complex. This appears to us very much like saying, there are two kinds of raspberry tart, raspberry and raspberry and red current tart; simple incomplex being faintly tautologous, and simple complex hopelessly bewildering.
    • 1861, Bewich Bridge, “On the different kinds of numbers”, in An elementary treatise on algebra, page 125:
      The number which expresses units only is called a whole, a simple, or an incomplex number. That which expresses units and parts of units taken together, is called a fractionary, a compound, or a complex number.
    • 2010, Joshua P. Hochschild, The Semantics of Analogy: Rereading Cajetan's De Nominum Analogia:
      And from this difference there follow all others which are usually said, such as that the what of the name may be of complex non-beings, by accidental, common, or extraneous characteristics; while the what of the thing is of an incomplex being known properly and essentially.
    • 2018, Jenny Pelletier, ‎Magali Roques, editors, The Language of Thought in Late Medieval Philosophy:
      For Ockham, all acts are either incomplex or complex. Incomplex acts of the intellect are for instance acts of intuitive cognition, that is, of intellectually grasping particular things in their very presence or acts of merely tokening concepts, whereas an act of entertaining a thought that p or an act of judging that p are complex.

Related terms[edit]


incomplex (plural incomplexes)

  1. (philosophy) An item or thing, as opposed to a relationship between items.
    • 1975, Gordon Leff, William of Ockham: The Metamorphosis of Scholastic Discourse:
      The source of Duns's error is to regard virtual knowledge as the property of something simple, so that knowledge of one incomplex can engender knowledge of another incomplex.
    • 2012, Gabriele Galluzzo, The Medieval Reception of Book Zeta of Aristotle’s Metaphysics:
      For a question may concern either incomplexes or complexes. If it concerns incomplexes, one first asks whether some incomplex is—and this is the whether-question—and then what it is—and this is the what-question.