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Verification theory

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The verification theory (of meaning) is a philosophical theory proposed by the logical positivists of the Vienna Circle. A simplified form of the theory states that a proposition's meaning is determined by the method through which it is empirically verified. In other words, if something cannot be empiricially verified, it is meaningless. For example, the statement "It is raining" is meaningless unless there is a way whereby one could, in principle, verify whether or not it is in fact raining. The theory has radical consequences for traditional philosophy as it, if correct, would render most of past philosophical work meaningless.

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