In this paper I intend to discuss a series of views about substance. I take as my starting point certain things locke says about substance, argue that there are a number of logico-linguistic pecularities in his view, claim that the basic intuition is correct but that locke's final pronouncements are wrong, canvass three other possible but incorrect attempts to accommodate this correct intuition, and then sketch what I take to be the proper way to embrace the intuition. Finally I indicate what changes in lockean doctrine would be needed if Locke wanted to hold (what I think is) the correct doctrine of substance. My conclusion is: not many.
The places where Locke is most explicit about his views on substance are the Letters to Stillingfleet. The value of these letters as against Locke views in the Essay has been sometimes depreciated, but it seems clear that the views expressed in the Letters are merely a making explicit the views held in the Essay.