A modifier-based philosophy of whole number
Martin, James V.
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This paper offers an alternative philosophy of whole number in which number-words are treated as being of the semantic-type modifier. Other accounts of number in which number-words are treated as names, syncategoremata, determiners, and predicates are considered and rejected based on their failure to provide number-words with the necessary compositional semantics. This leaves only modifiers as plausible candidates to play number-words' role in natural language. After the semantic-type modifier is chosen, a decision between number-words' being adjectival or adverbial modifiers must then be made. I argue that due to a lack of entities to be ascribed adjectival numerical properties we must settle on an adverbial treatment. After developing this treatment, I close with an attempt to explain seemingly singular-term uses of number-words in arithmetical statements like '2 + 2 = 4' in terms of these claims' stating the rules for substituting equivalent modifier-phrases in non-mathematical usages.
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