Express yourself, carefully, clearly, and cleverly!

Chronos devouring his children.

Opposites are: Pleonasm vs. Cogent
Ockham's razor

William of Ockham
Valid assumptions


Pleo + nasm
     (more) + (excessive)
the use of more words than are necessary for the expression of an idea or thought.

Redundant means saying something more than once, or redundancy the use of repetitive expression to make the point again.

List instances of redundancy in words and expressions.


Ockham's Razor: 
do not needlessly complicate explanations.

disregard unnecessary hypotheses

Ockham's Razor

William of Ockham, philosopher
(1285 - 1349)
The use of the fewest, most precise, words necessary for the expression of an idea or thought.

Ockham was called a nominalist, the view that universal essences, such as humanity, evil, the Good, or whiteness, are nothing more than concepts in the mind. It has been said that William of Ockham that he logically destroyed the Medieval synthesis by Thomas Aquinas.

"Ockham destroyed the synthesis and was condemned by the Catholic Church. Although it is true that Aquinas and Ockham disagreed on most issues, Aquinas had many other critics, and Ockham did not criticize Aquinas any more than he did others. It is fair enough, however, to say that Ockham was a major force of change at the end of the Middle Ages. He was a courageous man with an uncommonly sharp mind. His philosophy was radical in his day and continues to provide insight into current philosophical debates."

Sharon Kaye, John Carroll University. "William of Ockham," in The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy 2:30PM EDT; June 28, 2014


To form meaning through a focused, convincing argument (cogent) and to get the point when producing evidence in an essay, writing or speech.

Cogency (should convey a valid point) has powerful appeal to the mind.

List instances of cogency with use of words and expressions.


Convincing, forceful, influential, persuasive, powerful, sound, fit, hardy, healthy, undamaged, authentic, satisfactory, sensible, competent, solid.

 (L. Validus , Valor -- strong , forceful, powerful)

Well grounded on principles of evidence, or conforming to law, logic, facts.  Persuasion based on factual evidence as opposed to opinions.


Any reasonably logical argument or hypothesis will employ Ockham's razor: that is, do not needlessly complicate an explanation.

Valid arguments should employ Ockham's razor because clarity and brevity support the expression of factual authority.

So what does Chronos eating his young, as a symbol of time consuming us or time devouring its children, have to do with Ockham?

Simply: we don't have all day to waste on poorly expressed ideas or improbable hypotheses, get to the point and inform, or don't waste valuable time. Time will eventually devour us all.

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