N.2/2017 Riforme religiose, rivoluzioni politiche

Sul problema cartesiano del criterio di verità nel Liber metaphysicus di Giambattista Vico

Pierpaolo Ciccarelli

Università degli studi di Cagliari

Published in December, 2017

On the Cartesian Problem of the Criterion of truth in Gianbattista Vico’s Liber Metaphysicus


This essay deals with a passage of De Antiquissima Italorum sapientia in which Vico, inverting a well-known thesis placed at the beginning of Aristotle’s De interpretatione, sketches a semantic-linguistic conception of the human mind. In the same passage, Vico establishes a singular relationship between the human mind and the divine mind, according to which God’s thought is analogous to the asemantic way of reading the words that is proper to the child in the learning phase of reading. The reason for this analogy is to be traced back to the Cartesian problem of the regula veri: the “asemantic signs” of the child’s mind, since they are not representations of something, satisfy the condition of infallibility on which any criterion of truth stands or falls.


Giambattista Vico, René Descartes, Aristoteles, Ontotheological Tradition, Philosophy of Language

Critical Journal of History of Ideas
International Philosophy Journal

Andrea Tagliapietra and Sebastiano Ghisu

Giovanni Campus

Authorized by Tribunale di Sassari n.455 del 14/7/2008 - ISSN 2035-732X - ISSN (Paper edition) 2035-732X