"To define is to limit" - meaning?

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noppanat

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What does this quote mean? Could you explain it
please?
 

Skrej

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Re: To define is to limit means?

By giving a definition for something, you limit that thing to the parameters of the definition.

Sometimes it is difficult to describe something completely with just words. I can give you the definition of a pear, but that doesn't help you understand the taste, color, smell, and texture of all the various kinds of pears.
 

emsr2d2

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What does this quote mean? Could you explain it please?

Note that I have changed your title so that the phrase appears in quotes and it is also clear that you are looking for the meaning. You could have written your title like this too:

What does "to define is to limit" mean?
 

SoothingDave

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Re: To define is to limit means?

By giving a definition for something, you limit that thing to the parameters of the definition.

Sometimes it is difficult to describe something completely with just words. I can give you the definition of a pear, but that doesn't help you understand the taste, color, smell, and texture of all the various kinds of pears.

Defining also sets the boundaries. If I look at apples and pears, I may define "fruit" in a way that excludes grapes.
 
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