The Commens Dictionary

Quote from ‘The Bed-Rock Beneath Pragmaticism’


Very ignorant persons confound doubt with disbelief. Many others think simple unbelief constitutes doubt. What “doubt” really denotes is to be insupportably discontent to dispose for oneself of the proposition that is said to be “doubted,” in any suggestible way whatever, whether it be to affirm it to oneself, or to deny it, or yet to leave the question of its truth unsettled. The abstract definition is easily apprehended; but an intimate, pillow-sharing acquaintance with the thing must come when living experience brings it.

LI 379; MS [R] 300:16
‘Doubt’ (pub. 22.09.14-11:12). Quote in M. Bergman & S. Paavola (Eds.), The Commens Dictionary: Peirce's Terms in His Own Words. New Edition. Retrieved from
Sep 22, 2014, 11:12 by Mats Bergman
Last revised: 
Nov 19, 2015, 19:39 by Mats Bergman