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Borrowed from the Ancient Greek φιλοσόφημα (philosóphēma, syllogism) via Latin philosophema (syllogism). The Greek was formed from φιλοσοφέω (philosophéō, to philosophize or pursue knowledge) and the nominalizing suffix -μα (-ma).


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philosopheme (plural philosophemes)

  1. (philosophy) A philosophical statement, theorem or axiom.
    • 1825, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Prometheus of Aeschylus:
      This, the most venerable, and perhaps the most ancient, of Grecian mythi, is a philosopheme.
    • 1991, Kevin Mulligan, “How Not to Read: Derrida on Husserl”, in Topoi, volume 10, number 2, DOI:10.1007/BF00141340:
      Heidegger makes of distortions of bits of ordinary German — particularly nominalisations of prepositions — and his extensive use of a large number of the obscurer philosophemes (big words) of the tradition.
    • 1994, Dan Potter, “Real Philosophy minus Pretense: Searle on Schelling”, in (Please provide the book title or journal name), volume 1, DOI:46.200/BF00142340: those works by Schelling, the didactic tone passes into one of rebuke: readers are frequently taken to task in advance for their inability to understand. Incomprehensible to the reader of his own philosophemes which arise from want of cleverness in his own thinking.