§19. Time and Temporality [332-334]

Aristotle, ὁ δὲ χρόνος ὁμοίως καὶ πανταχοῦ καὶ παρὰ πᾶσιν,9 is, on the contrary, in a like manner both everywhere and also beside everything and close to everything. In this way a distinction is fixed that contrasts time with motion. While motion is always only in the moving thing and is only where the moving thing is, time is everywhere (πανταχοῦ), not in one definite place, and it is not in the moving thing itself but παρὰ, beside it, in some way close by it. Motion and time differ in how they belong to the moving thing and to that which is in time and which we call the intratemporal [das Innerzeitige]. Thus the first provisional determination that had suggested itself, that time itself might be a motion, collapses. Time itself is not motion, ὅτι μὲν τοίνυν οὐκ ἐστίν κίνησις.10 On the other hand, however, time also does not exist without motion. Thus the result can now be formulated: time is οὔτε κίνησις οὔτ᾿ ἄνευ κινήσεως;11 it is not itself indeed the motion of the moving thing but still it is not without motion. From this it follows that time is connected in some sense with motion; it is not κίνησις but κινήσεως τι, something at, close to, motion, something in connection with the motion of the moving thing. The problem of the question about the essential nature of time concentrates on the question: τί τῆς κινήσεως ἐστίν,12 what connected with motion is time?

In this way the course of the investigation is outlined beforehand. In chapter 11, the second chapter of the treatise on time, which is the central chapter of the whole treatise, Aristotle reaches the result, the answer to the question what time is. We shall merely record the result here because later we shall want to pursue in more detail the interpretation of the nature of time. He says: τοῦτο γάρ ἐστίν ὁ χρόνος, ἀριθμὸς κινήσεως κατὰ τὸ πρότερον καὶ ὕστερον;13 time is this, namely, something counted which shows itself in and for regard to the before and after in motion or, in short, something counted in connection with motion as encountered in the horizon of earlier and later. Aristotle then shows more precisely what is already present in the experience of a motion and how time is encountered there along with it. He makes clear to what extent and in what sense time is ἀριθμὸς, a number, and how the basic phenomenon of time, τὸ νῦν, the now, results.

This leads him, in the third chapter (chap. 12), to define in greater detail the connection between motion and time and to show that not only is

9. Physica, book 4, 218b 13.

10. Ibid., 218b 18.

11. Ibid., 11.218a 1. ["Neither movement nor independent of movement." Trans. Hardie and Gaye.]

12. Ibid., 219a 3. ["What exactly it has to do with movement." Trans. Hardie and Gaye.]

13. Ibid., 219b 1f. ["For time is just this-number of motion in respect of before and after." Trans. Hardie and Gaye.]