The centuries-long impact of Aristotelianism can be found
in certain words that are indispensable for the articulate
communication of thoughts, experiences, and problems.
A small sample of the vocabulary introduced by Aristotle:
analytika (Greek: to unravel) used for logic;
subject and predicate in grammar and logic;
form and matter as expressing the two correlative aspects of something that is possibly essential to it;
energy as the active power inherent in a thing;
substance (most important part of anything) and essence (all that makes a thing what it is);
genus and species (general, special);
We should always remember that the Western pursuit of science would have been unthinkable without the
definitions and vocabulary introduced by Aristotle.
Greek learning was passed on to the Romans, influenced Hindu mathematicians, and after the fall of the
Roman empire it was preserved and developed by the Arabs and by some Greeks in Constantinople -
while the rest of Europe retreated into the
In the later Middle Ages, Aristotle's work was rediscovered and enthusiastically adopted by medieval scholars. Fused and reconciled with Christian doctrine into a philosophical system known as Scholasticism, Aristotelian philosophy became the official philosophy of the Roman Catholic Church.
As a result, some scientific discoveries in the Middle Ages and Renaissance were criticized simply because they were not found in Aristotle. It is one of the ironies of the history of science that Aristotle's writings, which in many cases were based on first-hand observation, were used to impede observational science.