This paper is meant to be a comment on Beth's definability theorem. In it we shall make the following points.
Implicit definability as mentioned in Beth's theorem for first-order logic is a special case of a more general notion of uniqueness. If α is a nonlogical constant, Tα a set of sentences, α* an additional constant of the same syntactical category as α and Tα, a copy of Tα with α* instead of α, then for implicit definability of α in Tα one has, in the case of predicate constants, to derive α(x1,…,xn) ↔ α*(x1,…,xn) from Tα ∪ Tα*, and similarly for constants of other syntactical categories. For uniqueness one considers sets of schemata Sα and derivability from instances of Sα ∪ Sα* in the language with both α and α*, thus allowing mixing of α and α* not only in logical axioms and rules, but also in nonlogical assumptions. In the first case, but not necessarily in the second one, explicit definability follows. It is crucial for Beth's theorem that mixing of α and α* is allowed only inside logic, not outside. This topic will be treated in §1.
Let the structural part of logic be understood roughly in the sense of Gentzen-style proof theory, i.e. as comprising only those rules which do not specifically involve logical constants. If we restrict mixing of α and α* to the structural part of logic which we shall specify precisely, we obtain a different notion of implicit definability for which we can demonstrate a general definability theorem, where a is not confined to the syntactical categories of nonlogical expressions of first-order logic. This definability theorem is a consequence of an equally general interpolation theorem. This topic will be treated in §§2, 3, and 4.