APPREHENSION (apprehendo, to lay hold of).—Simple cognition,—knowledge of fact,
simple or complex. "By simple apprehension, we mean the power which the mind
possesses of forming concepts" (Morell, Mental Philosophy, p. 232).
Apprehension in Logic, is that act or condition of
the mind in which it receives a notion of any object; and which is
analogous to the perception of the senses, &c.
(Whately, Logic, bk. II. ch. I. sec. 1).
"Apprehension (Die Apprehension), is the
Kantian word for perception, in the largest sense in which we employ
that term. It is the genus which includes under it, as species,
perception proper, and sensation proper" (Meiklejohn, Criticism of
Pure Reason, note, p. 127).
Apprehend and Comprehend.—"We apprehend many truths which we do not
The great mysteries of
our faith, the doctrine, for instance, of the Holy Trinity—we lay hold upon it
(ad prehendo), we hang upon it, our souls live by it; but we do not take it all
in, we do not comprehend it; for it is a necessary attribute of God that He is
incomprehensible; if He were not so He would not be God, or the being that
comprehended him would be God also. But it also belongs to the idea of God that
He may be 'apprehended,' though not 'comprehended' by His reasonable creatures;
He has made them to know Him, though not to know Him all, to 'apprehend' though
not to 'comprehend' 'Him'" (Trench, On Study of Words, p. 110).