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It’s interesting to note that the ad hominem come from Locke, but he doesn’t define it in the usual manner or regard it as a bad thing. Locke’s concept of ad hominem is equivalent to a true elenchus, demonstrating your dialectical partner’s words are contradictory. Aristotle’s Sophistical Elenchoi defines a fallacy as an invalid deduction which appears to show a contradiction in the dialectical partner’s premises (he actually doesn’t quite stick to this definition). So ad hominem is by definition not a fallacy. Locke’s point is, of course, to present his conception of scientific method as so superior to Plato’s (which Ari is pinching) that Plato’s - and by implication the Cambridge Platonist’s - method is of solely historical interest. But the important thing is I figured out how to post comments in the Substack app

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