This text is part of the sketch of a theory of literary metaphor that I have been working on for some time. I want to thank two friends in particular for their faithful help. For one, Claudia Erdheim, University of Vienna, who has been helping me with criticism and suggestions for more than two years now. Secondly, Johannes Brandl, University of Salzburg, with whom a correspondence about metaphor that began more than five years ago was the impulse for my attempt at formulating my thoughts on metaphor as analytically as possible. Finally I would also like to thank Wolfgang Künne, University of Hamburg, who read this text and has saved me from at least some errors, as well as Severin Schroeder, Oxford University: the correspondence with him has also, I hope, led to the one or other elucidation in this text.


In scientific literature on metaphor, it is often remarked that in statements interpreted as metaphorical, expressions with the same extension cannot be substituted salva veritate.
Arthur C. Danto for example writes "that in the [non-metaphorically interpreted, F.J.C.] sentence 'his water boiled' we can replace the expression 'boiled' with 'reached 100 degrees', not so however [in the metaphorically interpreted sentence, F.J.C.] 'his blood boiled'" Danto continues with a frequently given explanation for this phenomenon: "There are deep reasons for the missing substitutability in the case of 'his blood boiled'. They have to do with metaphors having an intensional structure, it being a characteristic of such structures to oppose substitution with equal expressions."
Statements that are interpreted as metaphors are therefore, according to Danto, similar to statements describing what someone thinks or believes and also similar to statements describing what could or must be the case. All these statements have an "intensional structure" or, more precisely, are statements to which the rules of extensional semantics do not apply.
What I will argue is this: Statements which occur in literary texts, metaphoric or not, hold a special status in this class of statements. Therefore I would like to take a closer look at how statements, particularly metaphorical statements, break the rules of extensional semantics in literary texts. Danto, by the way, seems to hint at an explanation similar to this theory: He speaks of there being a "reference to the form" in metaphorically interpreted statements. However, it is unclear what exactly he means by this.

In the following, I would like to demonstrate three things:
First: If "reference to the form" means that in metaphorically interpreted statements reference is made to the intensions of partial expressions, then Danto's explanation is insufficient for literary texts. For there is a whole set of other cases of non-substitutability which cannot be explained by reference to the intensions of names or predicates.
Secondly I would like to show that this non-substitutability applies to all names and predicates that appear in literary texts, and is thus – at least in literary texts – not specific to metaphoric expressions.
Thirdly I would like to show that this non-substitutability in literary texts can be satisfactorily explained by taking into account what I will call the "area of meaning" of names and of predicates. "Reference to the form" would then mean "reference to the area of meaning of names and predicates".

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