Outlines of Logic and Encyclopaedia of Philosophy/Editor's Preface


This volume is a translation of the second German edition of Lotze’s “Outlines of Logic and Encyclopaedia of Philosophy,” which appeared in 1885. The second edition differed from the earlier one chiefly in the abbreviation of certain parts of the Encyclopaedia of Philosophy. The matter thus omitted consisted largely either of opinions expressed elsewhere in the Philosophical Outlines, or of a somewhat special criticism of certain views of Schelling, Fichte, and Herbart. It has therefore been thought best to take for translation the more recent but somewhat less voluminous German text.

Although Lotze dealt with the subject of Logic in a large and technical treatise, which constituted one of the two volumes of his System of Philosophy, completed by him before his death, it must be said that his contributions to it are perhaps less distinctive and valuable than those to any other of the several branches of philosophy upon which he wrote and lectured. Notwithstanding this, his views upon some important topics under the general subject will be found very suggestive and valuable. This seems to me particularly true of the chapter on the “Formation of Concepts.” There can be little doubt that the distinction between the association of mental images and the definitely logical processes of the mind is far too little drawn and too loosely held by certain English writers on Logic.

Part Second, which treats of the “Encyclopaedia of Philosophy,” so-called, will be found to contain a number of articles which throw considerable additional light upon the author’s general philosophical position. His peculiar doctrine of “Values,” as distinguished from a knowledge of what is necessitated or real, his view of the general method of philosophy and of the relation in which the Theory of Cognition stands to the whole of Metaphysics, and his attitude toward philosophical Scepticism and Criticism, will doubtless receive some elucidation from the careful study of these sections.

A first draught of the translation of §§ 6-38 of the Pure Logic was made by John F. Crowell, graduate student of Philosophy in Yale University, 1885-86. The rest of the work upon the volume is by my own hand. With this sixth number of the series of Lotze’s Philosophical Outlines, I regard my task as completed.

New Haven, March, 1887.