Aristotelian Logic, Platonism, and the Context of Early Medieval Philosophy in the West: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Aristotelian Logic, Platonism, and the Context of Early Medieval Philosophy in the West

1st Edition

By John Marenbon


400 pages

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Hardback: 9780860788225
pub: 2000-12-05

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Philosophy in the medieval Latin West before 1200 is often thought to have been dominated by Platonism. The articles in this volume question this view, by cataloguing, describing and investigating the tradition of Aristotelian logic in the period, examining its influence on authors usually placed within the Platonic tradition (Eriugena, Anselm, Gilbert of Poitiers), and also looking at some of the characteristics of early medieval Platonism. Abelard, the most brilliant logician of the age, is the main subject of three articles, and the book concludes with two more general discussions about how and why medieval philosophy should be studied.


John Marenbon has moved from a narrow analytic conception of philosophical rationality to a truly historical understanding of human reason in its different manifestations. For this reason, but not only for this reason, Aristotelian Logic, Platonism, and the Context of Early Medieval Philosophy in the West is an excellent book. We look forward to the future work of its prolific author.' Tijdschrift voor Filosofie

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; A survey and a catalogue: Medieval Latin commentaries and glosses on Aristotelian logical texts, before c. 1150 A.D., with a revised working catalogue;The Carolingian period: Carolingian thought; Alcuin, the Council of Frankfurt and the beginnings of medieval philosophy; John Scottus and the ’Categoriae Decem’; Wulfad, Charles the Bald and John Scottus Eriugena; John Scottus and Carolingian theology : from the De Praedestinatione, its background and its critics, to the Periphyseon; Anselm and the early 12th century: Anselm and the early medieval Aristotle; Glosses and commentaries on the Categories and De interpretatione before Abelard; Abelard: Abelard’s concept of possibility; Abelard’s ethical theory: two definitions from the Collationes; The Platonisms of Peter Abelard; The 12th century: Vocalism, nominalism and the commentaries on the Categories from the earlier 12th century; Gilbert of Poitiers (with a note on the Porretani;12th-century Platonism: old paths and new directions; Approaches to medieval philosophy: The theoretical and practical autonomy of philosophy as a discipline in the Middle Ages: Latin philosophy, 1250-1350; What is medieval philosophy?; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General