Definition of sortal in English:

sortal

adjective

Philosophy Linguistics
  • Denoting or relating to a term representing a semantic feature that applies to an entity as long as it exists, classifying it as being of a particular kind.

    • ‘Such completely general terms as ‘thing’ ‘entity’ or ‘object’, on Dummett's view, are not genuine sortal terms, since they fail to provide any criteria of identity.’
    • ‘Well, what is this nature, this sortal attribute?’
    • ‘Let ‘F’ and ‘G’ be certain sortal terms, that is to say, general terms denoting certain sorts or kinds of substantial individual.’
    • ‘It will be shown that a semantic fit between the sortal restrictions activated by the preposition and a depicted object results in inhibitory effects.’

noun

Philosophy Linguistics
  • A sortal term, for example human as opposed to engineer.

    • ‘On the other hand, to justify a total ban on constitutive reference with conceptual sortals, which would affect Anselm's argument, one would have to show that any such reference has to lead to a paradox.’
    • ‘Moreover, artifact sortals can be essentially or nonessentially artifactual.’
    • ‘I think Rosenberg's theory of ingression offers a good ontological place for universals: as determinable effective properties and as certain sortals - the latter corresponding to receptive relations.’
    • ‘Sortals for living objects determine principles of activity; sortals for artifacts determine principles of functioning.’
    • ‘Another type of important simple sortal comprises the stage sortals that apply exclusively to partly real individuals of a given kind.’

Pronunciation:

sortal

/ˈsɔːt(ə)l/