From IAOA Wiki


1. [Linguistics Philosophy] Denoting or relating to a term representing a semantic feature that applies to an entity as long as it exists, classifying it as being of a particular kind. (
2. [Philosophy] The three main ideas are that a sortal
i. tells us what the essence of a thing is
ii. tells us how to count things of that kind, which requires knowing which things are different and which are the same
iii. tells us when something continues to exist, and when it goes out of existence
(Grandy, Richard E., "Sortals", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2016 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.),