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$\text{Ord}$ is Mahlo

The assertion $\text{Ord}$ is Mahlo is the scheme expressing that the proper class REG consisting of all regular cardinals is a stationary proper class, meaning that it has elements from every definable (with parameters) closed unbounded proper class of ordinals. In other words, the scheme asserts for every formula $\varphi$, that if for some parameter $z$ the class $\{\alpha\mid \varphi(\alpha,z)\}$ is a closed unbounded class of ordinals, then it contains a regular cardinal.

A simple compactness argument establishes that $\text{Ord}$ is Mahlo is equiconsistent over $\text{ZFC}$ with the existence of an inaccessible reflecting cardinal. On the one hand, if $\kappa$ is an inaccessible reflecting cardinal, then since $V_\kappa\prec V$ it follows that any class club definable in $V$ with parameters below $\kappa$ will be unbounded in $\kappa$ and hence contain $\kappa$ as an element and consequently contain an inaccessible cardinal. On the other hand, if $\text{Ord}$ is Mahlo is consistent, then every finite fragment of the theory asserting that $\kappa$ is an inaccessible reflecting cardinal (which is after all asserted as a scheme) is consistent, and hence by compactness the whole theory is consistent.

If there is a pseudo uplifting (proof in that article) cardinal, or indeed, merely a pseudo $0$-uplifting cardinal, then there is a transitive set model of ZFC with a reflecting cardinal and consequently also a transitive model of ZFC plus $\text{Ord}$ is Mahlo. (Hamkins & Johnstone, 2014)


  1. Hamkins, J. D., & Johnstone, T. A. (2014). Resurrection axioms and uplifting cardinals.
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