195 I. 5
Being and Time

rather be done by not failing to recognize beforehand the essential conditions under which it can be performed. What is decisive is not to get out of the circle but to come into it in the right way. This circle of understanding is not an orbit in which any random kind of knowledge may move; it is the expression of the existential fore-structure of Dasein itself. It is not to be reduced to the level of a vicious circle, or even of a circle which is merely tolerated. In the circle is hidden a positive possibility of the most primordial kind of knowing. To be sure, we genuinely take hold of this possibility only when, in our interpretation, we have understood that our first, last, and constant task is never to allow our fore-having, fore-sight, and fore-conception to be presented to us by fancies and popular conceptions, but rather to make the scientific theme secure by working out these fore-structures in terms of the things themselves. Because understanding, in accordance with its existential meaning, is Dasein's own potentiality-for-Being, the ontological presuppositions of historiological knowledge transcend in principle the idea of rigour held in the most exact sciences. Mathematics is not more rigorous than historiology, but only narrower, because the existential foundations relevant for it lie within a narrower range.

The 'circle' in understanding belongs to the structure of meaning, and the latter phenomenon is rooted in the existential constitution of Dasein—that is, in the understanding which interprets. An entity for which, as Being-in-the-world, its Being is itself an issue, has, ontologically, a circular structure. If, however, we note that 'circularity' belongs ontologically to a kind of Being which is present-at-hand (namely, to subsistence [Bestand]), we must altogether avoid using this phenomenon to characterize anything like Dasein ontologically.

33. Assertion as a Derivative Mode of Interpretation

All interpretation is grounded on understanding. That which has been articulated1 as such in interpretation and sketched out beforehand in the understanding in general as something articulable, is the meaning. In so far as assertion ('judgment')2 is grounded on understanding and presents [154] us with a derivative form in which an interpretation has been carried out, it too 'has' a meaning. Yet this meaning cannot be defined as something which occurs 'in' ["an"] a judgment along with the judging itself. In our

1 'Gegliederte'. The verbs 'artikulieren' and 'gliedern' can both be translated by 'articulate' in English; even in Gennan they are nearly synonymous, but in the former the emphasis is presumably on the 'joints' at which something gets divided, while in the latter the emphasis is presumably on the 'parts' or 'members'. We have distinguished between them by translating 'artikulieren' by 'Articulate' (with a capital 'A'), and 'gliedern' by 'articulate' (with a lower-case initial).

2 '... die Aussage (das "Urteil" ) ...'