The Commens Dictionary

Quote from ‘Prolegomena to an Apology for Pragmaticism’


In the present application, a medad must mean an indecomposable idea altogether severed logically from every other; a monad will mean an element which, except that it is thought as applying to some subject, has no other characters than those which are complete in it without any reference to anything else; a dyad will be an elementary idea of something that would possess such characters as it does possess relatively to something else but regardless of any third object of any category; a triad would be an elementary idea of something which should be such as it were relatively to two others in different ways, but regardless of any fourth; and so on. Some of these, I repeat, are plainly impossible. A medad would be a flash of mental “heat-lightning” absolutely instantaneous, thunderless, unremembered, and altogether without effect.

1906 [c.]
CP 1.292
‘Medad’ (pub. 12.01.15-15:11). Quote in M. Bergman & S. Paavola (Eds.), The Commens Dictionary: Peirce's Terms in His Own Words. New Edition. Retrieved from
Jan 12, 2015, 15:11 by Mats Bergman