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essence




In philosophy, a term referring to the permanent actuality of a thing, the that-by-which it can be recognized, whatever its outward appearance. Different philosophers have used the term with various detailed significations; John Locke, for instance, distinguished a thing's real essence, the what-it-is-in-itself, from its nominal essence, the what-it-appears-to-be, the name given to it.


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   • PHILOSOPHY