Implicature and disimplicature. Again, re-reading stuff.
I note that indeed the quotation provided by McEvoy:
"For a large class of cases—though not for all—in which we employ the word
"meaning" it can be defined thus: the meaning of a word is its use in the
So indeed, Witters is disimplicating, "for a LARGE class or cases -- if not
all," since, well, he does EXPLICATE "though not for all".
There are various ways to explore Witters's disimplicature here.
I don't think he ever gave a case where his adage does not hold. I.e. It's not
like he goes,
"For a LARGE class of cases -- though not for all (I can think of the word
'God', for example) -- in which, etc."
So, I assume that this explicit rejection (explicature, if you mustn't) is
rhetoric, in that he does NOT provide an illustration of even ONE SUCH case
where his slogan does not hold.
I say it's rhetorical because it sounds _good_: "For a LARGE class of cases --
though not for all -- in which we employ the word 'meaning', ..."
This does NOT mean that this is what provoked Grice to consider things like:
i. Those spots mean measles.
ii. The budget means we're going to have a hard year.
iii. I mean to go to Alaska.
Anyway, I felt like making the point that indeed there IS this 'rhetorical
rejection' ("though not for all") in Witters -- which possibly Max Black would
have something to say about -- had he written a companion to the "PI" and not
just the "Tractatus".
Thanks again to McEvoy for the great quotes and exegeses!