First principle

In philosophy and science, a first principle is a basic proposition or assumption that cannot be deduced from any other proposition or assumption.

First principles in philosophy are from First Cause[1] attitudes and taught by Aristotelians, and nuanced versions of first principles are referred to as postulates by Kantians.[2]

In mathematics, first principles are referred to as axioms or postulates. In physics and other sciences, theoretical work is said to be from first principles, or ab initio, if it starts directly at the level of established science and does not make assumptions such as empirical model and parameter fitting. "First principles thinking" consists of deriving things to their fundamental proven axioms in the given arena, before reasoning up by asking which ones are relevant to the question at hand, then cross referencing conclusions based on chosen axioms and making sure conclusions do not violate any fundamental laws. Physicists include counterintuitive concepts with reiteration.


Share this article:

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article First principle, and is written by contributors. Text is available under a CC BY-SA 4.0 International License; additional terms may apply. Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.