Existential quantifier

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Existential quantifier is a logical operator of predicate logic, written ThereIs, which makes it possible to express that at least one entity in the universe of discourse has a particular property.


in (i), ThereIs is used to express that there is at least one entity x which has property P:

(i)  ThereIs(x) [ P(x) ]

The existential quantifier can be used to represent the meaning of indefinite noun phrases:

(ii) John ate a donut
     ThereIs(x) [ donut(x) & ate(john,x) ]


Utrecht Lexicon of Linguistics


  • Gamut, L.T.F. 1991. Logic, language, and meaning, Univ. of Chicago Press, Chicago.