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but the logical content of those states.  Thus if you and I are both thinking that the bat is on the mat, then we have different presentations (your mental state and my mental state are numerically distinct), but those presentations express the same thought; since thoughts are grasped by the mind and not by the senses, thoughts are like presentations in not being sensible; but since two minds can think the same thought, thoughts are like physical objects in being public.  (A fourth category of items sensible but private is presumably impossible, since being sensible is a way of being public.)

This tripartite division may remind some readers of Popper’s three worlds; but while Frege’s outer and inner realms correspond roughly to Popper’s worlds 1 and 2 respectively, Frege’s third realm and Popper’s world 3 are quite dissimilar, inasmuch as the third realm is timeless and includes thoughts that no subject has ever entertained, while world 3, the realm of objective knowledge, is subject to change and is the product of conscious activity.2  Note also that while Frege’s conception of the third realm may look Platonic, Frege does not commit himself to any particular account of the third realm’s ontological status, and would at any rate resist the notion that facts about logic and truth are grounded in facts about

2 Popper originally used the term “third world,” but later discarded it in favour of “world 3” because of the former term’s distracting political associations.  (Frege, however, wins the distracting-political-associations sweepstakes, as the German phrase translated as “third realm” is in fact “dritte Reich” – though in 1918 the term obviously did not have its present connotations.)

R. T. Long – Wittgenstein, Praxeology, and Frege’s Three Realms – p. 2

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