I have the following rules for rewriting sentences with bounded quantifiers in arbitrary first-order languages to ordinary (unbounded) quantifiers:

$$\begin{align} \forall\phi(x).\psi(x)&\qquad\to\qquad\forall x.\phi(x)\implies \psi(x),\\ \exists\phi(x).\psi(x)&\qquad\to\qquad\exists x.\phi(x)\land\psi(x) \end{align}$$

... where $\phi$ and $\psi$ are formulae with free variable $x$ ($\phi$ is the scope of the quanitfier - e.g. $\forall x\in\Bbb{R}.\psi(x)$).

Additionally, I have...

$$\exists!x.\phi(x)\qquad\to\qquad \exists x.\forall y.\phi(y)\iff y=x$$

I would like to expand bounded uniqueness quantifiers in arbitrary first-order languages. (i.e. $\exists!\phi(x).\psi(x)$) in the same way as the universal and existential quantifier.

As far as I can tell, there are two ways to do this, depending on whether I apply the rule for expanding the existential or uniqueness quantifier first (provided that these rules are appropriately modified).

Applying the rule for existential quantifiers first yields the sequence of reductions:

$$\begin{align} \exists!\phi(x).\psi(x)&\qquad\to\qquad\exists!x.\phi(x)\land\psi(x)\\ &\qquad\to\qquad\exists x.\forall y.(\phi(y)\land\psi(y))\iff y=x&(\textbf{fmla 1}) \end{align}$$

Applying the rule for uniqueness quantifiers first yields:

$$\begin{align} \exists!\phi(x).\psi(x)&\qquad\to\qquad\exists\phi(x).\forall\phi(y).\psi(y)\iff y=x\\ &\qquad\to\qquad\exists \phi(x).\forall y.\phi(y)\implies(\psi(y)\iff y=x)\\ &\qquad\to\qquad\exists x.\phi(x)\land\forall y.\phi(y)\implies(\psi(y)\iff y=x)&(\textbf{fmla 2}) \end{align}$$

Analytic tableaux shows that these are nonequivalent if $=$ is taken only to be an equivalence relation.

The ncatlab page on quantifiers provides the following:

$$\exists!\, x\colon T, P(x) \;\equiv\; \exists\, x\colon T, P(x) \wedge \forall\, y\colon T, P(y) \Rightarrow (x = y)$$

...which, generalizing the typing relation to arbitrary formulae, would suggest...

$$\begin{align} \exists!\phi(x).\psi(x)&\qquad\to\qquad\exists\phi(x).\psi(x)\land\forall\phi(y).\psi(y)\implies y=x\\ &\qquad\to\qquad\exists x.\phi(x)\land\psi(x)\land\forall\phi(y).\psi(y)\implies y=x\\ &\qquad\to\qquad\exists x. \phi(x)\land\psi(x)\land\forall y.\phi(y)\implies(\psi(y)\implies y=x) & (\textbf{fmla 3}) \end{align}$$

This is most similar to formula 2, but weaker due to the replacement of the bi-implication $\psi(y)\iff y=x$ with the implication $\psi(y)\implies y=x$. Analytic tableaux shows that $\textbf{fmla 2}\implies\textbf{fmla 3}$ if $=$ is taken to be an arbitrary equivalence relationship.


These were obtained via analytic tableaux using the program found here (github here)


$E:=\forall x.\forall y.\forall z.R(x,x)\land(R(x,y)\implies R(y,x))\land((R(x,y)\land R(y,z))\implies R(x,z))$

(i.e. $R$ is an equivalence relation)

For $E\implies (\textbf{fmla 1}\implies\textbf{fmla 2})$ the program timed-out

$E\implies (\textbf{fmla 1}\implies\textbf{fmla 3})$ is valid

For $E\implies (\textbf{fmla 2}\implies\textbf{fmla 1})$ we have the countermodel $\mathcal{M}_1:=\langle D=\{0,1\}, R=D^2,\ \phi=\{0\},\ \psi=\{0,1\}\rangle$

$E\implies (\textbf{fmla 2}\implies \textbf{fmla 3})$ is valid

For $E\implies (\textbf{fmla 3}\implies \textbf{fmla 1})$, we have the countermodel $\mathcal{M}_2:=\langle D=\{0,1\},R=D^2,\ \phi=D,\ \psi=\{0\}\rangle$

For $E\implies (\textbf{fmla 3}\implies \textbf{fmla 2})$, we have the countermodel $\mathcal{M}_2$

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You write "if $=$ is taken only to be an arbitrary equivalence relation". But $=$ is not an arbitrary equivalence relation, it's equality! $\endgroup$ Jul 7 '20 at 21:37
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexKruckman I have this because 1) the theorem prover I am using does not have equality and 2) unique up to (equivalence relation) occurs quite frequently throughout mathematics. $\endgroup$
    – R. Burton
    Jul 7 '20 at 21:51

The three formulations are all equivalent. The last one is the most intuitive variant and can be shortened in two steps to the first variant by essentially incorporating the $\phi$ and $\psi$ predications on $x$ into the $\forall y$ clause, by making the implication two-directional and saying that $\phi$ and $\psi$ must also hold if the object currently consiered is $x$. One may also "unsimplify" and go in the other direction from the first over the second to the third.

(1) and (2):
Transforming the biimplication into a conjunction of two implication directions:
$A \to (B \to C)$ is logically equivalent to $(A \land B) \to C$, which gives the equivalence of the $\Longrightarrow$ direction of the biimplication, $𝜙(𝑦)∧𝜓(𝑦) \Longrightarrow 𝑦=𝑥$ and $𝜙(𝑦)⟹(𝜓(𝑦) \Rightarrow 𝑦=𝑥)$.
The $\Longleftarrow$ direction can be obtained from (2) to (1) with $\phi(x) \land \ldots $ and $y = x$ by substituting $y$ for $x$ to obtain $\phi(y) \land \ldots $, thereby "importing" the $\psi(x)$ into the $\forall y$ clause. In the other direction from (1) to (2) one may likewise "export" and explicity specify $\phi(x)$, thereby resolving the dependency on $y = x$ and weakening the biimplication to a one-directional implication.

(2) and (3):
Analagous to above, by exporting the predication of $\psi$ on $x$ into a separate clause, the biimplication can be weakend to just the $\Rightarrow$ direction because now $\psi(x)$ is captured by an explicit predication and can do without the combination $\psi(y)$ and $y = x$.
Strenthening the implication to a biimplication with $x = y$ and substituting $y$ for $x$ makes it possible to go in the other direction and import the $\psi(x)$ into the $\forall$ clause.

(1) and (3) follows by transitivity.

I sketched these results with natural deduction proofs and was able to confirm the interderivability of all three; something must have gone wrong in your tableaus -- perhaps the treatment of the equality symbol?

Re. your counter models:

$M_1$ is not a counter model of (2) $\vDash$ (1) because it is not a model of (2) because $v(x) = 0$ is the only $x$ such that $\phi(x)$, but for $v(y) = 1$ since $\psi(y)$ but not $y = x$ the biconditional is false and hence the formula is not true for all $y$.

$M_2$ is not a counter model of (3) $\vDash$ (1) because it is a model of (1) because with $v(x) = 0$, for $v(y) = 0$, both the conjunction and the equality is true and for $v(y) = 1$, both the conjunction and the biconditional is false, and hence for all $y$ the formula is true.

$M_2$ is not a counter model of (3) $\vDash$ (2) analogously.

  • $\begingroup$ The tableaux was generated using a program, the same one found at (umsu.de/trees). It does not have equality, so used "$R$ is an equivalence relation" $\implies$ in the evaluation, substituting $y=x$ for $R(y,x)$. $\endgroup$
    – R. Burton
    Jul 7 '20 at 21:55
  • $\begingroup$ This doesn't seem to mimic rules for equivalence adequately; my first guess is that you should have used $E \land \ldots$ rather than $E \Longrightarrow \ldots$. The generated counter models are not counter models -- see the update to my post. $\endgroup$
    – lemontree
    Jul 7 '20 at 22:34

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