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Topic Top"ic, n. [F. topiques, pl., L. topica the title of a
work of Aristotle, Gr. topika`, fr. topiko`s of or for place,
concerning to`poi, or commonplaces, fr. to`pos a place.]
(a) One of the various general forms of argument employed in
probable as distinguished from demonstrative reasoning,
-- denominated by Aristotle to`poi (literally, places),
as being the places or sources from which arguments may
be derived, or to which they may be referred; also, a
prepared form of argument, applicable to a great variety
of cases, with a supply of which the ancient rhetoricians
and orators provided themselves; a commonplace of
argument or oratory.
(b) pl. A treatise on forms of argument; a system or scheme
of forms or commonplaces of argument or oratory; as, the
Topics of Aristotle.
These topics, or loci, were no other than general
ideas applicable to a great many different
subjects, which the orator was directed to consult.
In this question by [reason] I do not mean a
distinct topic, but a transcendent that runs
through all topics. --Jer. Taylor.
2. An argument or reason. [Obs.]
Contumacious persons, who are not to be fixed by any
principles, whom no topics can work upon. --Bp.
3. The subject of any distinct portion of a discourse, or
argument, or literary composition; also, the general or
main subject of the whole; a matter treated of; a subject,
as of conversation or of thought; a matter; a point; a
4. (Med.) An external local application or remedy, as a
plaster, a blister, etc. [Obsoles.] --Wiseman.
Topic Top"ic, a.
Topical. --Drayton. Holland.