Principle of Non-Contradiction

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The Principle of Non-Contradiction is a valid deduction sequent in propositional logic.

Proof Rule

If we can conclude both $\phi$ and $\neg \phi$, we may infer a contradiction.

Sequent Form

$p, \neg p \vdash \bot$


The Principle of Non-Contradiction can be expressed in natural language as follows:

A statement can not be both true and not true at the same time.

This means: if we have managed to deduce that a statement is both true and false, then the sequence of deductions show that the pool of assumptions upon which the sequent rests contains assumptions which are mutually contradictory.

Thus it provides a means of eliminating a logical not from a sequent.

Also known as

The Principle of Non-Contradiction is otherwise known as:

  • Principium contradictionis, Latin for principle of contradiction
  • Rule of not-elimination
  • Law of contradiction
  • Law of non-contradiction

Also see