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Aetiologia

 

Techniques > Use of language > Figures of speech > Aetiologia

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Aetiologia is the justification or explanation of a claim or statement by showing cause and effect.

Example

I will not repent, for I am a true and good person as all who know me will tell.

She did leave early, but it was because her manager called her and there were customers waiting.

He broke the rules. He must be punished.

Discussion

There is a deep human need to appear rational and hence explain, which leads us to include cause-and-effect reasoning in our arguments. In effect we think 'They may think I just made that up -- perhaps I'd better explain better.'

Causal explanation can often be spotted through cause linking words such as 'because', 'as', 'for', etc.

Aetiologia is perhaps not so much a 'figure of speech' as a 'figure of reasoning'.

Classification: Reasoning

See also

Cause-and-effect reasoning, Making the argument

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