Epsilon theorems in intermediate logics

Baaz, Matthias, and Richard Zach. 2022. Epsilon theorems in intermediate logics. The Journal of Symbolic Logic 87(2), pp. 682–720. DOI: 10.1017/jsl.2021.103. Open access.

Any intermediate propositional logic (i.e., a logic including intuitionistic logic and contained in classical logic) can be extended to a calculus with epsilon- and tau-operators and critical formulas. For classical logic, this results in Hilbert’s ε-calculus. The first and second ε-theorems for classical logic establish conservativity of the ε-calculus over its classical base logic. It is well known that the second ε-theorem fails for the intuitionistic ε-calculus, as prenexation is impossible. The paper investigates the effect of adding critical ε- and τ -formulas and using the translation of quantifiers into ε- and τ -terms to intermediate logics. It is shown that conservativity over the propositional base logic also holds for such intermediate ετ -calculi. The “extended” first ε-theorem holds if the base logic is finite-valued Gödel-Dummett logic, fails otherwise, but holds for certain provable formulas in infinite-valued Gödel logic. The second ε-theorem also holds for finite-valued first-order Gödel logics. The methods used to prove the extended first ε-theorem for infinite-valued Gödel logic suggest applications to theories of arithmetic.

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