Sum Of Its Parts Meaning

(idiomatic) A concept in holism. Related to the idea that the total effectiveness of a group of things each interacting with one another is different or greater than their effectiveness when acting in isolation from one another.

Example:   Together, the ant colony was greater than the sum of its parts.
(Can we date this quote?) Aristotle, The Metaphysics:
  The whole is different from the sum of its parts