Metaphysics

Met`a*phys"ics

(?), n. [Gr. after those things which relate to external nature, after physics, fr. beyond, after + relating to external nature, natural, physical, fr. nature: cf. F. mtaphysique. See Physics. The term was first used by the followers of Aristotle as a name for that part of his writings which came after, or followed, the part which treated of physics.] 1. The science of real as distinguished from phenomenal being; ontology; also, the science of being, with reference to its abstract and universal conditions, as distinguished from the science of determined or concrete being; the science of the conceptions and relations which are necessarily implied as true of every kind of being; philosophy in general; first principles, or the science of first principles.
[1913 Webster]

Metaphysics is distinguished as general and special. General metaphysics is the science of all being as being. Special metaphysics is the science of one kind of being; as, the metaphysics of chemistry, of morals, or of politics. According to Kant, a systematic exposition of those notions and truths, the knowledge of which is altogether independent of experience, would constitute the science of metaphysics.
[1913 Webster]

Commonly, in the schools, called metaphysics, as being part of the philosophy of Aristotle, which hath that for title; but it is in another sense: for there it signifieth as much as "books written or placed after his natural philosophy." But the schools take them for "books of supernatural philosophy;" for the word metaphysic will bear both these senses.
Hobbes.
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Now the science conversant about all such inferences of unknown being from its known manifestations, is called ontology, or metaphysics proper.
Sir W. Hamilton.
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Metaphysics are [is] the science which determines what can and what can not be known of being, and the laws of being, a priori.
Coleridge.
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2. Hence: The scientific knowledge of mental phenomena; mental philosophy; psychology.
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Metaphysics, in whatever latitude the term be taken, is a science or complement of sciences exclusively occupied with mind.
Sir W. Hamilton.
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Whether, after all,
A larger metaphysics might not help
Our physics.
Mrs. Browning.
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Sat 15th December 2018