Module: Predicate logic
Quote of the page
I must be allowed to add some explanatory remarks to bring the subject home to reason—to that sluggish reason, which supinely takes opinions on trust, and obstinately supports them to spare itself the labour of thinking.
- Mary Wollstonecraft
Here are more examples. Make sure that you understand why the wffs are translated the way they are.
The second wff above actually means "It is not the case that EVERYTHING IS D." So it says that not everything is D. This is of course the same as saying that something is not D. If you are not sure why that is the case, look at the following diagram :
Suppose the yellow region represents everything that is D. The area outside the yellow region represents things that are not D. To say that not everything is D is to say that something exists in the class represented by the region outside the D circle. So this is the same as saying that something is not D.
As you can see, some of these wffs are equivalent to each other :
If you are not sure why, use the diagram above to help you. What the table of equivalence tells us is that the existential quantifier can be defined in terms of the universal quantifier, and vice versa. In general, we can assume these quantifer exchange rules :
(QE1) Whenever a wff in PL contains "∀x", replacing it with "~∃x~" will produce a logically equivalent wff.
(QE2) Whenever a wff in PL contains "∃x", replacing it with "~∀x~" will produce a logically equivalent wff.
Translate these wffs in PL into English. "Bz" means z is a bird and "Fz" means z can fly.
Use the quantifier exchange rules to rewrite each of above wffs into a different but logically equivalent wff.