expresses the property that things have when they seem to us to be of the same kind as instances of the doorknob stereotype; and we had the concept HOLE, which expresses the property that things have when they seem to us to beof the same kind as instances of the hole stereotype; and we had the concept A NICE DAY, which expresses theproperty that things have when they seem to us to be of the same kind as instances of the nice day stereotype . . . etc.(Also, I suppose we had logico-mathematical concepts; about which, however, the present work has nothing to say.)
Because the concepts we had back in the Garden were all concepts of mind-dependent properties, there was, back then, a kind of appearance/reality distinction that we never had to draw. We never had to worry about whether theremight be kinds of things which, though they satisfy the DOORKNOB stereotype, nevertheless are not doorknobs. Wenever had to worry that there might be something which, as it might be, had all the attributes of a doorknob but was, inits essence, a Twin-doorknob. Or, who knows, a giraffe.91
But also, because we were Innocent, we didn’t have the concept WATER, or the concept CONSONANT, or the concept LEVER, or the concept STAR. Perhaps we had concepts that were (extensionally) sort of like these; perhapswe used to wonder who waters the plants. But, if so, these concepts were importantly different from the homophoniccounterparts that we have now. For it’s compatible with the real concept WATER that there should be stuff that strikesus as being of the very same kind as instances of the water stereotype but that isn’t water because it has the wrong kindof hidden essence (XYZ, perhaps). And it‘s compatible with the real concept STAR that there should be things thatstrike us as very different from paradigm stars, but which do have the right kind of hidden essences and are thereforestars after all (a black dwarf, perhaps; or the Sun). And it‘s compatible with the concept CONSONANT that we havenow that there should be sorts of things that strike us as neither clearly consonants nor clearly not consonants butwhich, because they have the right kinds of hidden essences, really are consonants whether or not we think they are (lsand rs, perhaps).
I’ll presently have much more to say about what concept of water we could have had in the Garden; and about how it would have been different
There were, to be sure, faux doorknobs, fake doorknobs, trompe l’œil doorknobs, and the like; these were particulars which looked, at first glance, to satisfy the doorknob stereotype but, on closer examination, turned out not to do so. Doorknob vs. trompe l œildoorknob is a distinction within mind-dependent properties; hence quite differentfrom the difference between doorknob and, as it might be, water. (In consequence, drawing an appearance/reality distinction is not all there is to being a metaphysicalessentialist. See n. 92 .)
I don’t, myself, advise it. Grant that children think that properties that don’t appear can matter to whether a thing is a horse. It isn’t implied that they think what a bona fide essentialist should: that there are properties (other than being a horse) that necessitate a thing’s being a horse. But, for present purposes, nevenever mind.
from the concept of water that we have now. And about how to square that difference with what an atomistic and informational semantics says about the individuation of concepts. But this will do to be getting on with: back in theGarden, when we were Innocent, we never thought about kinds of things which, though they are much the same intheir effects on us, are not much the same in their effects on one another. Or about kinds of things which, though theyare much the same in their effects on one another, are strikingly different in their effects on us. Back in the Garden,when we were Innocent, we took it for granted that there isn’t any difference between similarity for us and similarity sansphrase, between the way we carve the world up and the way that God does.