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In philosophy the discussion of mereology concerns the relation of wholes and their parts.[1] A common example is a 'book' and its 'pages'. Another common example used to illustrate the potential silliness of combining things is 'Clinton's nose and the Eiffel tower'.[2][3] Among the issues raised by these examples is finding a cogent rule for separating ridiculous from sensible combinations, and finding in what sense such combinations actually exist, and in what sense they simply are constructions of language and matters of usage.


  1. Achille Varzi (May 14, 2009). Edward N. Zalta, ed.: Mereology. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2012 Edition).
  2. Eli Hirsch (2011). “Chapter 5: Quantifier variance and realism”, Quantifier Variance and Realism : Essays in Metaontology. Oxford University Press, pp. 68-95. ISBN 0199732116. 
  3. Theodore Sider (2011). “§9.5 Quantifier variance”, Writing the book of the world. Oxford University Press, pp. 175 ff. ISBN 0199697906.