Not a long note here but just my observation that as much as Russell liked Spinoza, he really can't stand Aristotle. On the one hand, he recognizes Aristotle's greatness: "... after his death it was two thousand years before the world produced any philosopher who could be regarded as approximately his equal" (159).
With regard to his predecessors too, "Aristotle's merits are enormous."
Then we get a hint of Russell's frustration: "almost every serious intellectual advance has had to begin with an attack on some Aristotelian doctrine; in logic, this is still true at the present day" (160). Since logic and such were Russell's babies, this was his battle at the time.
But he has some interesting "snide" remarks throughout several chapters on Aristotle:
With regard to Aristotle tutoring Alexander the Great: "I cannot imagine his pupil regarding him as anything but a prosy old pedant, set over him by his father to keep him out of mischief" (161).
"Aristotle's metaphysics, roughly speaking, may be described as Plato diluted by common sense" (162).
"If, therefore, I have failed to make Aristotle's theory of universals clear, that is (I maintain) because it is not clear" (164).
After Russell has quoted at length Aristotle's sense of the best individual, he writes (perhaps correctly), "One shudders to think what a vain man would be like" given how Aristotle portrays a magnanimous one (176).
Again perhaps rightly, Russell writes, "When we come to compare Aristotle's ethical tastes with our own ... we find ... an acceptance of inequality which is repugnant to much modern sentiment. Not only is there no objection to slavery, or to the superiority of husbands and fathers over wives and children, but it is held that what is best is essentially only for the few--proud men and philosophers" (183).
"There is in Aristotle an almost complete absence of what may be called benevolence or philanthropy."
Then Russell gets to Aristotle's logic and the gloves come off.
"Even at the present day, all Catholic teachers of philosophy and many others still obstinately reject the discoveries of modern logic, and adhere with a strange tenacity to a system which is as definitely antiquated as Ptolemaic astronomy. This makes it difficult to do historical justice to Aristotle. His present-day influence is so inimical to clear thinking that it is hard to remember how great an advance he made upon all his predecessors... Aristotle ... is still especially in logic, a battle-ground, and cannot be treated in a purely historical spirit" (195).
"I conclude that the Aristotelian doctrines with which we have been concerned in this chapter are wholly false, with the exception of the formal theory of the syllogism, which is unimportant. Any person in the present day who wishes to learn logic will be wasting his time if he reads Aristotle or any of his disciples" (202, italics mine!).
Finally, with regard to Aristotle's physics, Russell concludes with a number of observations:
"This theory provided many difficulties for later ages... Galileo's discovery that a projectile moves in a parabola shocked his Aristotelian colleagues. Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo had to combat Aristotle as well as the Bible in establishing the view that the earth is not the centre of the universe, but rotates once a day and goes round the sun once a year" (207).
"Aristotelian physics is incompatible with Newton's "First Law of Motion," originally enunciated by Galileo."
"Finally: The view that the heavenly bodies are eternal and incorruptible has had to be abandoned. The sun and stars have long lives, but do not live forever. They are born from nebula, and in the end they either explode or die of cold... the Aristotelian belief to the contrary, though accepted by medieval Christians, is a product of the pagan worship of sun and moon and planets."