.syllogism

Although the term "syllogism" is never used in Grendel, Gardner does give us a sample in the Dragon's mockery of human thinking:

All pigs eat cheese.
Old Snaggle is a pig.
If Snaggle is sick and refuses to eat, try cheese. (64)

"Syllogism" is defined by The American Heritage Dictionary as:

A form of deductive reasoning consisting of a major premise, a minor premise, and a conclusion; for example, All human beings are mortal, the major premise, I am a human being, the minor premise, therefore, I am mortal, the conclusion.

The Greek philosopher Aristotle thought that a correctly formed syllogism was the best, most rational, tool by which men could test the truth.

The Dragon's mind sees all things in connection across time and space, and so he is able to spot the flaw in human minds which causes them to have a narrow vision, to believe that facts can exist in isolation from each other. "They only think they think."(64)

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