By Ludwig Wittgenstein
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Extra info for Philosophical Grammar
One may now say that the purpose, the effect of the word "hey" is the important thing about the word; but explaining the purpose or the effect is not what we call explaining the meaning. It may be that if it is to achieve its effect a particular word cannot be replaced by any other; just as it may be that a gesture cannot be replaced by any other. ) No one would believe that a poem remained essentially unaltered if its words were replaced by others in accordance with an appropriate convention.
By "explanation of the meaning of a sign" we mean rules for use but above all definitions. The distinction between verbal definitions and ostensive definitions gives a rough division of these types of explanation. In order to understand the role of a definition in the calculus we must investigate the particular case. 25 The words "shape" and "colour" in the definitions determine the kind of use of the word, and therefore what one may call the part of speech. And in ordinary grammar one might well distinguish "shape words", "colour words", "sound words", "substance words" and so on as different parts of speech.
Our proposition "meaning is what an explanation of meaning explains" could also be interpreted in the following way: let's only bother about what's called the explanation of meaning, and let's not bother about meaning in any other sense. 33 But one might say something like this. The sentences that ~e utter have a particular purpose, they are to produce certam effects. They are parts of a mechanism, perhaps a psychological mechanism, and the words of the sentences are also parts of the mechanism (levers, cogwheels and so on).