Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus


Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus
Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus Stephen Dumont LIFE AND WORKS Henry of Ghent Henry of Ghent was arguably the most influential Latin theologian between Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus, regent as a leading master of theology at the University of Paris for the better part of the last quarter of the thirteenth century. Henry’s true importance for the period has been increasingly recognized, owing first to the edition of the works of Scotus, for whom Henry was by far the leading contemporary source, and more recently to the critical editions of his own works, which establish his relation to such important figures as Giles of Rome, Godfrey of Fontaines, and Aquinas himself. Reckoned to have been born in Ghent sometime before 1240, Henry undertook early studies at the cathedral school in Tournai, where he maintained lifelong and influential connections. He studied theology at Paris, where he became master in 1275 and actively taught and disputed for nearly twenty years. As a young master, Henry participated in Bishop Stephen Tempier’s sweeping actions against Aristotelianism at Paris in March of 1277 involving the arts faculty, Giles of Rome, and certain doctrines of Aquinas. In fact, personal remarks by Henry about these closely connected events provide otherwise unknown details. Henry himself says that he sat on Tempier’s episcopal commission (assessores episcopi) of sixteen masters that produced the syllabus of 219 propositions condemned by Tempier on 7 March 1277. The syllabus comprised in large measure the more extreme Aristotelian and Arabic philosophical positions taught in the arts faculty. Henry certainly represented a critical attitude to Aristotelianism on the commission, and indeed several articles on Tempier’s syllabus appear traceable to him. Henry was also present at the immediately ensuing meetings of the theology faculty that resulted in the censure of the younger theologian, Giles of Rome, and in the masters’ own condemnation (damnatio per sententiam magistrorum) of Aquinas’s doctrine of unicity of substantial form. Henry’s Augustinian orientation, so evident in Tempier’s actions, continued throughout his career, encountering new Aristotelian foes within the faculty after 1285, when Giles of Rome was rehabilitated at the order of Honorius IV and Godfrey of Fontaines became master. A secular, Henry was also known as a strident critic of the mendicant privileges granted by Martin IV in 1281. His opposition was such that he was reprimanded and suspended in 1290 by the future Boniface VIII. Henry’s death is usually given as 29 June 1293. Henry’s two major works are the direct products of his long teaching career at Paris. The first is his Summa of Ordinary Questions and the second his fifteen series of Quodlibetal Questions. Cross-references establish that both works were disputed and written concurrently over the length of his career. His regular or ‘ordinary’ questions derived from his disputations held as master during the normal course of term. Revised for publication as a massive Summa, these ordinary questions represent Henry’s systematic investigation of the nature of theology (articles 1–20), the divine nature and attributes (articles 21–52), and the Trinity (articles 53–75). Henry intended his Summa to include a part on creatures, but he never completed it. As such, Henry’s Summa corresponds roughly in plan to the first forty-three questions of the first part of Aquinas’s own Summa theologiae, yet approaches Aquinas’s entire work in length. Unlike ordinary questions, which were disputed by the master at regular class hours throughout the academic year, quodlibetal questions were special university disputations only held before Christmas and Easter. Here the questions were not posed by the master himself on controlled topics, but by the audience, on any issue of interest. Hence they were designated quodlibetales or ‘on anything whatever’. Accordingly, while ordinary questions allowed for systematic investigation, quodlibetal questions forced the master to address the current controversies in the university community that at times involved the master himself. Henry’s fifteen quodlibetal disputes represent one for nearly every academic year from 1276 to 1292. Each dispute itself contains up to forty separate questions, which were considerably expanded and revised by Henry for publication, including lengthy insertions, cancellations and digressions. Henry brought the quodlibetal question to its apex as a literary form of scholastic theology and was the first to make the quodlibet a principal vehicle for his thought. Duns Scotus It is perhaps no exaggeration to claim that less is known with certainty about the life, career and works of Duns Scotus than about any scholastic thinker of his rank. Aside from his own writings, only six slight documents provide what scattered facts are known of his life. Of Scottish origin, Scotus is thought to have been born about 1266, on the basis of the established date of his ordination to the priesthood on 17 March 1291. The once widely accepted details of Scotus’s place of birth, family, early education and entry into the Franciscan order are now considered unreliable owing their source to the discredited chronicle Monasticon Scoticanum of Marian Brockie. From about 1288, Scotus studied theology at Oxford, although it is disputed whether this was interrupted after his ordination in 1291 by several years of study at Paris. In either case, Scotus was certainly studying theology at the Oxford convent by 1300. On 6 July 1300, he was one of twenty-two Franciscans from the Oxford diocese presented to John Dalderby, bishop of Lincoln, for permission to hear confessions. About this same time, he was beginning to revise his lectures on the Sentences, given as a bachelor at Oxford. This revised commentary on the Sentences, known as the Ordinatio (see below), was under way in 1300, because in the prologue Scotus himself says that he is writing in that year. Further evidence of his activities as bachelor at Oxford during this same period is given by his participation in a disputation of the Franciscan master Philip Bridlington, who was also in the same group presented to Dalderby. Scotus, however, never incepted as master at Oxford. He was instead sent in the autumn of 1302 to study theology at Paris, where he began a new set of lectures on the Sentences. These were interrupted in June 1303 when, together with some eighty other Franciscans, he was expelled from France for declaring allegiance to Pope Boniface VIII against Philip the Fair in their escalating dispute over taxation of church property. Where Scotus went during his exile from Paris is unknown, but it is commonly assumed that he either returned to Oxford or went to Cambridge, where he is believed to have lectured at some point in his career. Scotus was back in Paris at the latest by the autumn of 1304 to finish lecturing on the Sentences. It is inferred that Scotus must have incepted as master at Paris by early 1305, because in a letter dated 18 November 1304, Gonsalvus of Spain, the newly elected Minister General of the Franciscans and the Franciscan regent master when Scotus first arrived at Paris, recommended Scotus as next in line for promotion to master. In his letter, Gonsalvus testifies to Scotus’s reputation, which he says had ‘already spread everywhere’. During his regency at Paris, Scotus held one quodlibetal disputation and debated with the Dominican William Peter Godinus on the principle of individuation. For reasons unknown, Scotus was replaced as the Franciscan regent at Paris by Alexander of Alexandria in the autumn of 1307 and abruptly transferred to the Franciscan convent in Cologne, where he is listed as a lector in early 1308. Nothing is known of his activities during his Cologne period. Before his career could reach full maturity and with his major work the Ordinatio still in a state of revision, Scotus died in Cologne later that year, where he remains buried today. The date of his death is traditionally given as 8 November 1308. As with the details of his life and career, uncertainty about Scotus’s writings is unparalleled for a medieval thinker of his stature. While much progress has been made in establishing Scotus’s genuine corpus, important questions of chronology and canon still remain. Scotus’s genuine works can be divided into philosophical and theological writings, and roughly speaking the former are regarded as earlier. Scotus’s logical works are generally considered to be his earliest. These include sets of questions on Porphyry and the Categories, two works on De interpretatione, and questions on the Sophistical Refutations. The important Questions on the Metaphysics have traditionally been considered an earlier work as well, though somewhat later than the logical treatises, but this has been disputed by commentators since the sixteenth century. Current evidence suggests that the latter books, VII– IX (only the first nine books are authentic), show revision from later in Scotus’s career, perhaps even very late. Finally, there are two philosophical works that fall outside this main group owing to uncertainty over their dating and degree of authenticity: questions on On the Soul and the Theoremata. While On the Soul is surely Scotistic, manuscripts attest that it has been edited by a follower of Scotus (scotellus), perhaps Antonius Andreas (d. c. 1320). Both manuscripts and contemporaries assign the Theoremata to Scotus, but their authenticity has been debated owing to a section entitled Treatise on Articles of Faith (Tractatus de creditis), which denies the philosophical demonstrability of the existence of God. The bulk of Scotus’s reputation rests, however, on his more mature and longer theological writings. These are essentially four: various versions of his commentaries on the Sentences, two sets of disputes known as Collationes, a set of twenty Quodlibetal Questions, and the Treatise on God as First Principle (De primo principio). The textual situation of Scotus’s commentaries on the Sentences is one of the most complicated in medieval scholarship. First of all, Scotus lectured on the text at Oxford, again at Paris and, at an undetermined time, at Cambridge. Second, his secretaries and students conflated these different versions in an effort to fill in places apparently left incomplete at his death. Finally, Scotus revised by means of numerous additions and annotations to the primitive text, so that these had to be distinguished from the intrusions inserted by his students and secretaries. The better part of modern textual criticism on Scotus has been devoted to teasing apart these various versions and layers of his Sentences. This research has established that there are two versions of his Oxford Sentences, an earlier Lectura, which was then considerably expanded to form the Ordinatio, previously termed the Opus oxoniense. As indicated, Scotus read the Sentences again when he went to Paris in the autumn of 1302, which commentary survives as neither a lectura nor an ordinatio but as what students’ reports called reportationes. A major point of dispute is the chronological relation of these Parisian Reports (Reportationes parisienses) to the Oxford Ordinatio. The long-held view was that Scotus constructed the Ordinatio from both the early Oxford Lectura and the Parisian Sentences, rendering the Ordinatio later than the Parisian commentary and according it a status as the most definitive of Scotus’s works. Recent studies have tended to revise this view, placing at least the first book of the Ordinatio before rather than after the corresponding part of the Parisian Sentences. This revised chronology seems required not only by Scotus’s own statement dating the prologue of the Ordinatio to 1300, two years prior to his theological studies in Paris, but also by the Parisian commentary’s noticeable independence in organization, topic and treatment relative to both of its Oxford counterparts. Scotus’s two series of Collationes, one held at Oxford and the other at Paris, are known from the eye-witness testimony of his secretary, William of Alnwick, to represent the proceedings of oral disputation. It has been suggested that these Collationes were exercises carried out by Scotus within the Franciscan houses while still a bachelor, but this is not certain. His Quodlibetal Questions are assigned to his regency at Paris, perhaps in the academic year 1306/7. As the product of a formal university disputation by a regent master in theology, they must certainly be regarded as Scotus’s mature thought. Finally, the De primo principio is a systematic treatise on the transcendentals, containing Scotus’s proof for the existence and infinity of God. While the authenticity of the De primo is uncontested, it none the less betrays the influence of an editor. More than half of the De primo has been supplied verbatim from the Ordinatio, indicating that it is to some extent a compilation of material. Despite this, it has received more contemporary attention by way of translation and commentary than any other single work in Scotus’s corpus. RELATION OF HENRY OF GHENT TO DUNS SCOTUS Henry’s significance, both historically and philosophically, stems from his position in the thirteenth century of having an important and immediate relationship to both Aquinas and Scotus. On the one side, Henry mounted the most sustained and sophisticated Augustinian response in the later thirteenth century to the Aristotelianism of Aquinas. Adopting a critical attitude towards Aristotle on fundamental points, Henry returned to more Augustinian principles, which he infused with certain elements of Avicenna. In comparison with Aquinas, Henry can fairly be said to exhibit a doctrinal tendency called Avicennizing Augustinianism’, a label coined by Etienne Gilson to describe the exploitation by certain scholastic thinkers of similarities between Augustine and Avicenna, such as their mutual denial of knowledge by abstraction. Thus, where Aquinas argues ‘according to Aristotle and the truth’ (secundum Aristotelem et veritatem rei), Henry will instead argue ‘according to Augustine, Avicenna, and the truth’ (secundum Avicennam et veritatem rei; secundum Augustinum et Avicennam).1 In particular, Henry reverted to certain positions considered Augustinian by thirteenthcentury standards, such as the compatibility of faith and demonstration, a need for a special divine illumination in natural knowledge, a heavy emphasis on the reality of the divine ideas and their role in both knowledge and creation, and above all a strong voluntarism against the intellectualism of Aristotle. Henry specifically criticized Aquinas on numerous points, including the concept of theology as a subalternated science, the exclusivity of faith and demonstrative reasoning, the definition of self-evidence and related criticism of Anselm’s ontological argument, the pre-eminence given to Aristotle’s argument for the unmoved mover, the denial of any positive knowledge of God’s essence (quid est) in the present life, the limitation of each Aristotelian separate form or angel to a species in itself, the real distinction of essence and existence (at least as defended by Giles of Rome), the indemonstrability of the temporal beginning of the world, and a variety of theses connected to the relationship of the intellect to the will. In the words of one of Henry’s editors, ‘No theologian immediately after the death of Aquinas so sharply criticized the philosophical basis of his theology as Henry of Ghent.’2 On the other side, Henry’s own revised Augustinian outlook was itself subjected to an extensive, critical evaluation by Duns Scotus. What led Scotus to focus on Henry is not known. Perhaps in view of the restrictions placed by the Franciscans in 1282 on reading Aquinas’s Summa, the Order turned to Henry’s Summa to supply the systematic training in current theology during Scotus’s formation. A high regard for Henry is evident in Oxford Franciscans just prior to Scotus, such as Roger Marston, who in 1283 described Henry as ‘a recent, solemn doctor, renowned and studious in philosophy from infancy’.3 Whatever the explanation, Henry constitutes not just a source, but the source, for Scotus’s thought. This is in fact so true that Scotus appears to be the first major scholastic thinker to base his principal work explicitly on the systematic examination of a contemporary. On many important questions, Scotus develops his own position as a critical reaction to that of Henry, often after extensive reporting, analysis and refutation of Henry’s reasoning. This is the case, for example, on such fundamental issues as the relation of faith and reason, natural knowledge of God, the nature of transcendental concepts, the primary object of the intellect, necessity and contingency, the divine ideas, creation, illumination, causality of the will, connection of the virtues and on numerous points of Trinitarian theology. All the same, however, it would be a distortion to see Scotus as simply rejecting Henry’s positions. Even when clearly repudiating a view of Henry, Scotus will none the less presuppose much of Henry’s underlying philosophical framework and formulate his own position in terms of Henry’s basic concepts, distinctions and technical vocabulary. This is not to say that Scotus was unoriginal and derivative but only that his originality cannot be fully understood apart from his relationship to Henry. Nowhere is the relationship between Scotus and Henry better illustrated than in their dispute over the nature of the transcendental concepts. UNIVOCITY AND ANALOGY One of the most striking results of the metaphysics of Duns Scotus was that the concepts of being and the other transcendentals applied univocally to God and creatures, substance and accidents. Scotus broke with the unanimous and traditional view that being, conceived in its utmost generality, could only be predicated analogously and not univocally of substance and accident, much less of God and creatures. Scotus made his innovative move to univocity in specific and explicit response to the peculiar version of analogy advanced by Henry of Ghent. Indeed, it would be more accurate to say that Scotus’s path to univocity was paved by Henry’s prior and equally innovative interpretation of the traditional view of analogy itself. Here, perhaps more than in any other area of disagreement between them, it would be a distortion to portray Scotus as simply rejecting, rather than building upon, an antecedent position of Henry. None the less, in advancing beyond Henry’s own version of analogy to univocity, Scotus had to solve fundamental difficulties connected with univocity that had always been compelling motivations for the traditional view of analogy, difficulties which Henry evidently saw but could not resolve. Scotus advances his theory of univocity as part of a critical and exhaustive revision of Henry’s account of our natural knowledge of God. At issue was an abiding concern of the period: how to reconcile the possibility of attaining some knowledge of the divine nature from creatures with God’s total transcendence of creatures. The difficulty involved was long recognized, having a formulation as far back as Gaunilo’s reply to Anselm that the argument of the Proslogion appeared to put God in a genus or species. In order for God to be totally transcendent, the divine nature can have no reality in common with creatures. But if God and creatures agree in nothing real, then a creature can never yield a positive notion of the divine nature that conveys any of its reality. One standard solution was to stress the negative character of natural knowledge of God. For instance, Aquinas attempted to reconcile divine transcendence with our natural knowledge of God by way of the Aristotelian distinction between knowing that something is (quia est; si est) versus knowing its essence or nature (quid est). According to Aquinas, our intellect in its present, natural state can only know through sensible creatures that God is or exists (si est). As for the divine essence, we cannot know what it is (quid est) but only what it is not.4 This solution was attacked in the condemnations issued by Stephen Tempier on 7 March 1277. Article 215 on Tempier’s syllabus repudiated such attempts to protect the transcendence of God at the expense of restricting natural knowledge of the divine nature to the bare fact of its existence. As censured the article read, ‘That it can only be known that God is, or that God exists.’ (Quod de Deo non potest cognosci nisi quia ipse est, sive ipsum esse.) Both Henry and Scotus agreed that some positive knowledge of the divine nature and attributes was naturally attainable from creatures, thereby fully reinstating the tension between the transcendence and knowledge of God. Henry, for his part, attempted to account for this positive knowledge while maintaining the traditional view that being and the other transcendentals were only analogously common to God and creatures. Henry none the less saw that he had to revise the traditional doctrine of analogy, and in so doing extended that traditional view as far as it could go without actually becoming a doctrine of univocity. Scotus rejected Henry’s revised theory as unworkable and argued that only univocity could ensure a naturally attainable concept of the divine essence. Henry of Ghent on Analogy Henry of Ghent followed the common opinion in holding that being is predicated of God and creatures neither univocally, nor purely equivocally, but analogously.5 The traditional understanding of the terms was based on Aristotle. The definitions of univocity and equivocity derived from the opening chapter of the Categories, while the notion of analogy was taken chiefly from the treatment of being as an equivocal by reference ({{}}ad unum) in the Metaphysics.6 Thus, a term is univocal if it has a single meaning or concept (ratio, intentio, intellectus, conceptus) when applied, such as ‘animal’ when predicated of a horse and a human being. It is a pure or chance equivocal (aequivocum in casu) if it is applied according to completely discrete and unrelated meanings, such as the ‘bark’ of a dog and a tree. Analogy, however, is intermediate between these two extremes of univocity and equivocity. An analogous term has different but connected meanings, so that one is primary and the other is related to it, usually either as a cause or an effect. Aristotle’s own example of ‘healthy’ served as the standard illustration. The primary meaning of ‘healthy’ is the state of a wellfunctioning, living organism, yet clearly things are said to be healthy which do not possess health in this sense. Both medicine and urine, for example, are called ‘healthy’ not because they possess health in the primary sense, for they are not living at all, but because they bear some relationship to it. Medicine is a cause of health and urine a sign or effect of it. The scholastics adapted Aristotle’s conception of analogy as a middle way between the extreme positions of univocity and equivocity, to account for some knowledge of God based on creatures while ensuring divine transcendence. Being was not univocal to God and creatures, but rather analogous, so that it applied to God primarily and to creatures in a secondary but related sense, although appropriate distinctions had to be made to avoid equating the relation of divine and created being with that of substance and accident. In this regard, Henry was in conformity with the common view. Being therefore does not belong to God univocally…nor purely equivocally…but in a middle way, namely, by analogy, because it signifies one thing primarily and principally and the other as in some way ordered, related, or proportional to what is primary… And in this way, being in the most common sense primarily signifies God, secondarily creature, just as created being primarily signifies substance and secondarily accidents, although the relation in each case is different. (Summa a.21 q.2 (ed. 1520, I, f.124r)) Aristotle, however, was not the only authority on the transcendentals. Even more important for the scholastics was Avicenna, who had not only made being, in explicit contradistinction to God, the subject of metaphysics, but also one of the primary conceptions of the mind. These claims of Avicenna for the primacy of being had to be addressed, for together they implied that there was a concept of being antecedent to either God or creatures. Henry’s formulation of the Avicennian objection is important, not only because it states sharply the impediment to univocity, but also because in Henry’s reply Scotus clearly saw that the denial of univocity involved highly unacceptable consequences. What is predicated of several things, but has an essential concept different from the concepts of those things [of which it is predicated], is something really common to them, for every concept is based upon some thing. Being is this sort, because according to Avicenna, ‘Being is imprinted on the mind by a first impression,’ even before the concept of God or creature are impressed on it. [Therefore, being is something really common to God and creatures.] (Summa a.21 q.2 (ed. 1520, I, f.123v)) The argument is that being must have a concept different from those of God or creature, because it is known prior to either one. Since being is predicated of both God and creature, that concept must also be common. Thus, the noetic primacy of being entails that it have a concept distinct from and common to those proper to God and creatures. Because any such common concept must be based on some common reality, being must be something really common to God and creature. It is the major premiss which constitutes the underlying impediment to making any concept univocally common to God and creatures: every concept must be based on some reality (omnis conceptus fundatur in re aliqua). Accordingly, a common concept must be of some common reality. But, obviously, no reality can be admitted as common to God and creatures. This will prove to be the most formidable difficulty for Scotus’s doctrine of univocity: how to sustain a real concept univocally common to God and creatures without positing any reality common to them. The minor premiss, based on Avicenna’s famous text on the primary intelligibles, is meant to establish that being has a concept outside of those of God and creatures owing to its position as a primary notion. The burden of Henry’s reply will be to deny that there is any concept of being apart from those of God and creatures. It is in this reply that Scotus will find his argument that, on the contrary, being must be a distinct concept, and hence univocal. In reply to Avicenna’s text, Henry is emphatic that there can be no concept of being absolutely taken apart from the concepts of God and creature, as if there were some single, simple concept of being common to them (aliquis unicus intellects simplex communes), for there can be no such concept. Rather, any real concept of being is either of the being proper to God or of the being proper to creatures, but not of anything common to them. Henry’s position is governed by the requirement in the major premiss that a real community must underwrite a real, common concept. Since there can be no such real community between God and creatures, there can be no real common concept. Demanding therefore a strict correspondence in unity between a real concept and its foundation in reality, Henry concludes that at the transcendental level being forms two proper and distinct concepts corresponding to the two separate and diverse realities of divine and created being. These concepts, while proper and diverse, none the less have a community of analogy, the real foundation for which is the causal dependence of the creature on God. This agreement in being by virtue of the connection cause and effect, while real, is not sufficient to support a single, common notion of being but only two proper concepts related as primary and secondary. Had Henry gone no further than this in his reply to Avicenna, his account would have conformed to what Peter Aureoli later identified as the common opinion. Being conceived at its most general level does not form a single, simple ratio common to God and creatures, but two proper rationes related in attribution as primary and secondary. Henry, however, did go further in his reply, motivated by a need not only to explain Avicenna’s text on the primary intelligibles, upon which he would depend heavily in his proof for the existence of God, but also to account for how the mind could move from a concept proper to creatures to one proper to God. Henry explains that if there appears to be some common concept of being, this is only because the divine being or created beings have been conceived in an indistinct or indeterminate way. But to conceive of either the being proper to God or proper to creatures in an indistinct way is not to have some third, distinct concept of being as absolutely undetermined and common to both. That is, there is no separate concept of being as absolutely undetermined that can be abstracted from the proper concepts of God and creature, as if each proper concept comprised a common notion of being as undetermined and a determining concept, such as finite and infinite or created and uncreated. Rather, the proper concepts of God and creatures are in each case already concepts of being as undetermined. Any concept of being as absolutely undetermined, which appears to be single, simple, and prior to the proper concepts of God and creature, is merely the result of confusing the two different ways in which the being proper to God and creatures is in each instance undetermined. Divine being is undetermined in the sense that it cannot be determined by any advening perfection or entity. This is what it means to say that the divine being is infinite, for it cannot be determined or limited. Created being, however, when taken in its utmost generality as common to all creatures, is undetermined in the sense that it has been abstracted from all determinations with which it is found in reality, such as ‘existing in itself’ and ‘existing in another’, which determine or limit created being to substance and accident. Henry’s technical terminology for this distinction is that divine being is undetermined negatively, for it is to be denied all determination, and created being privatively, for it can be conceived without the determinations with which it is found. As Henry explains in slightly different terms elsewhere, to conceive of being absolutely, that is, without any determination or qualification, can mean two different things. It can mean either being in its singular, most perfect instance (in quadam singularitate) or in its widest generality (in quadam universalitate). Being taken absolutely in the first way is God, in the second way is the notion of being common to the categories. There is no sense in which being can be conceived as undetermined apart from these two.7 Having made this distinction, Henry replies to the objection that what appears to be an absolutely undetermined concept of being univocally common to God and creatures is in fact a confusion of the two different ways in which being is undetermined. The divine being is undetermined by negation, because it lacks all determination in both act and potency; created being is undetermined by privation, because it is conceived as lacking determination in act but not in potency. The confusion between the two arises because both are concepts of being without determination, and to this extent they are similar. The mistake is to think that from this similarity one can extract a single notion of being as absolutely undetermined common to both God and creatures. Rather, what appears to be a simple, common notion of undetermined being is in fact a conflation of two proper notions of being, which resemble each other in their removal of determination. Against the challenge presented by Avicenna’s text that there is a concept of being common to God and creatures because, as a primary notion of the mind, the concept of being is prior to both, Henry upholds the traditional position of analogy. Being, conceived in its utmost generality, cannot be reduced to a single notion but only to two distinct concepts, one proper to God and the other to creatures, which are none the less related through attribution or analogy. Yet, in his answer to Avicenna Henry went considerably beyond this traditional view by explaining that being could be conceived with sufficient indeterminacy so as to appear univocal. While insisting that there was in truth no univocal notion of being, Henry none the less allowed that the being of either God or creatures could be conceived so indistinctly that the concept proper to the one actually was known in a confused way along with the concept of the other, because both were concepts of being without determination. This was a critical move past the traditional view of analogy and was clearly but a step away from Scotus’s univocity, where a simple common concept would replace a confusion of two proper but similar concepts. After Henry went so far as to admit an apparently univocal concept of being, Scotus would conclude that such a concept must in fact be univocal. Thus Henry revised the common opinion on analogy, according to which the concepts of being proper to God and creatures were united through attribution, by adding that they were also united by confusion in an indistinct notion that appeared univocal. Henry’s underlying motivation for this extension of the traditional view was to provide some cognitive bridge between the two proper notions of being which allowed the human mind to pass from its knowledge of creatures to one of the divine nature. This bridge could not be provided by any concept common to both, so Henry supplied it by allowing the two concepts to be conceived together as though they were one. That is, Henry permitted the being of a creature to be conceived in such an indeterminate fashion that it in fact comprised, in an indistinct and confused fashion, the concept of being proper to God. In this way, Henry was attempting to explain, where the traditional view of analogy had not, how one could arrive at a proper concept of the divine nature from creatures. This is clear from Henry’s account of the mind’s ascent from creatures to God. In the context of Tempier’s condemnation of the position that we can only know that God exists (si est), but not what God’s nature is (quid est), Henry undertook an extensive examination in nine questions of the categories of si est and quid est as they applied to our knowledge of God, paying particular attention to the extent to which knowledge of the divine nature had to be negative (quid est non). In express opposition to the assertion of Aquinas, Henry denied that in the present life we cannot know what God is but only what God is not. If our knowledge of the divine nature were limited only to negations about creatures, then we would know no more about the nature of God from creatures than we would about Socrates by saying that he is not a rock. That is, to have purely negative knowledge of the divine essence is to have no knowledge of it at all. The reason is that negation is always negation of something, so that all meaningful knowledge of what something is not presupposes, to some degree, knowledge of what it is. Furthermore, a purely negative knowledge of the divine nature could not account for our love and desire of God in the present life, for, as Augustine says, we can love what is unseen but not what is unknown. Accordingly, against the assertion of Aquinas, Henry concludes that there must be some positive knowledge of the divine quid est naturally available in the present life from creatures. In effect, Henry sees a complete reduction of our knowledge of the divine nature to negations about creatures as inconsistent with analogy, because it is tantamount to making all predication about God purely equivocal. On the other hand, the positive knowledge of the divine nature provided by analogy does not compromise the transcendence of God to the human mind, because it is not of God’s essence in its own particularity and individuality. Analogy can only yield a knowledge of God’s quid est which is general, indistinct and, as it were, incidental to the substance of the divine nature itself. Yet, even this imperfect knowledge of the divine nature provided by analogy requires a sophisticated manoeuvre by Henry, utilizing his special understanding of the doctrine of analogy itself.8 Henry’s account of the mind’s ascent to the divine quid est from creatures involves three main stages, designed to conform broadly to the traditional understanding of the pseudo-Dionysian ways of causality, eminence and negation. At each stage the divine essence is known in a progressively less general fashion, so that ascent is made by degrees to an increasingly distinct knowledge of God, which none the less always remains in some way general and universal. In these three stages Henry says that God is known most generally (generalissime), less generally (generalius), and least generally (generaliter), which involve, respectively, abstraction, eminence and negation. The first or generalissime stage is both the most elaborate and important, for it is here that the initial move is made from creatures to God. This first stage itself comprises three degrees of knowledge based on two types of ‘abstraction’ (abstractio). According to Henry, a formal perfection can be abstracted from its instances in two ways: either as a universal or as something separate. In the first type of abstraction, for example, goodness can be abstracted from this or that particular good as a common and universal form in which they share (commune quoddam et universale). Here, while the form is abstracted from its instances, it is none the less still seen in relation to them as that in which they all participate, for the universal is ‘one in many’. In the second type, the form is considered in absolute separation from any material instance, for it is seen not as something common divided among many particulars but as transcendent and subsistent in itself (in se subsistens). Quite clearly, these two types of ‘abstraction’ are for Henry the noetic procedures that result in the concepts of being, goodness or any other perfection as indeterminate by privation and negation. These two kinds of abstraction produce the three steps of the generalissime way of knowing the divine nature. In the first step of most general knowledge of God, any perfection in a creature already reveals, at least in a very confused and indistinct fashion, something of the divine nature. For instance, in knowing this or that particular, created good, Henry says that we know two things: the ‘this’ and ‘that’, which are proper to creatures, and ‘good’ which is something common to God and creatures. Thus, even in ‘this created good’ we know something of the divine good, even if it is not known as distinct from the creature. If, however, by the first type of abstraction we remove the ‘this’ proper to the creature, we attain a notion of the good that is less determined to the creature than before, and this is the second step of the generalissime stage. Here the good is not seen as proper to creatures or God but as something analogously common to both (commune analogum ad Deum et creaturam). Although in fact the good of God and of the creature form two diverse and distinct concepts (diversos intellectus distinctos faciunt), just as is the case with being, nevertheless these notions are so similar that our intellect at this point conceives both together in a confused way as one (quia tamen proximi sunt, intellectus noster concipit modo confuso utrumque ut unum).9 By performing a second abstraction, we can distinguish within this confused, analogous notion those two proper concepts, so that we differentiate between what is abstract in the sense of universal and in the sense of separate. This is the third and final step of most general knowledge of the divine nature, where some perfection, such as goodness or being, is viewed as subsistent in itself. Such a concept is proper to God alone. Once Henry has reached this point, he can easily apply the Dionysian techniques of eminence (prae-eminentia) and negation (remotio) to this proper concept to ascend to respectively the generalius and generaliter levels of knowing the divine essence. In eminence, the note of excellence is added to that of subsistence to result in the notion of God as a most perfect nature. In negation, all composition and diversity are removed from this most perfect nature, so that its goodness, wisdom and so forth are taken to be identical with its being. In this way, Henry concludes, we can know what God is, not just what God is not, from creatures in the present life, although ‘by comparison to the beatific vision of God’s nature, this knowledge is almost nothing’. Henry’s claim for a natural knowledge of the divine quid est from creatures would appear to face an insuperable obstacle in his denial of any conceptual community between God and creatures. By restricting our knowledge of God and creatures solely to two wholly proper, simple, and diverse notions, Henry seems to have completely undermined any epistemological basis for claiming that we can derive any concept of the one from the other. Henry clearly saw this obstacle and used considerable ingenuity to overcome it. He conceded that God and creature could be brought together in a common concept, yet found a way to deny that such a notion was univocal. Henry’s strategy, naturally enough, is to explain the derivation of knowledge of God from creatures by means of abstraction. Thus, as outlined above, we begin with some perfection of a creature, such as being or goodness, and detach the particularizing and determining elements with which that perfection is found in its material existence to reach a universal and general notion of it. In Henry’s above scheme this abstraction marks the transition from the first level of most general knowledge, in which being and goodness are conceived as most proper to creatures, to the second. Henry is clear that in this step he has in mind the familiar and broadly Aristotelian kind of abstraction that yields common and universal concepts. When taken to its end, however, this process of abstraction does not result merely in a universal concept of being or goodness applicable to creatures alone, which is to say one proper to them, but in one that is common to both creator and creature (quod dicitur ‘bonum’, hoc est commune creatori et creaturae.)10 To be sure, this notion is not univocally common, for it is not a distinct concept included in both those of God and creature. It is rather ‘analogously common’, for it includes both the concepts of God and creature in a confused way as one. Thus, for Henry, a perfection can be abstracted from a creature and conceived with such indeterminacy that it is not just the universal knowledge of a creature but a confused knowledge of both God and creature. This exceedingly abstract notion, which Henry calls ‘analogously common’, provides the necessary epistemological bridge from creature to God by constituting a concept of both at once. Henry attempts to span the cognitive gulf between God and creatures, the knowledge of which he has otherwise limited to proper, simple and diverse notions, by means of his ‘analogously common’ concept. He has constructed it to perform the required epistemological functions of a truly common concept, for it is universal and applicable to both of its instances, but in such a way that it cannot be called univocal. None the less, Henry’s solution is remarkable for how close it comes to an admission of univocity. Indeed, his analogous common concept so nearly functions as a univocal one that even Henry himself at times slips into seeing it as such. In describing how we abstract the general notions of being and the other transcendentals from creatures, so that we do not distinguish in such a notion what is proper to God from what is proper to creatures, Henry adds, ‘just as also in univocal things we abstract a common nature’ (sicut etiam in univocis abstrahitur natura communis). Elsewhere, Henry describes the universal concept of being abstracted from creatures as ‘indifferently common to what belongs to God and creature’ (conceptus generalis ut entis…qui indifferenter communis est ad id quod est creatoris et ad id quod est creaturae).11 It is little wonder that Scotus will argue that Henry cannot consistently deny univocity, if for no other reason than he appears to have all but admitted it. As will be clear, the distance between Henry’s revised analogous concept and Scotus’s univocal one is accordingly not as great as the opposition in their positions might suggest. They both agree that being and the other transcendental perfections can be thought of without determination to either God or creature and that this is the result of abstraction from creatures. They diverge sharply, however, on the exact nature of this indeterminate conception. Henry denies that it is in fact a separate and distinct concept but holds rather that it is a confusion of two proper notions of being which are themselves simple, ultimate and irreducible. Scotus argues against Henry that to admit such an indeterminate apprehension of being and then to deny that it forms a bona fide, distinct, simple and univocal concept is a contradiction. However, in seeking to avoid the inconsistencies that he sees lurking within Henry’s analogously common concept, Scotus must show that a truly univocal notion does not violate the real transcendence of God, which Henry’s revised doctrine of analogy, whatever its faults, tried to preserve. Duns Scotus on Univocity In his commentaries on the Sentences, Scotus addresses the issue of the univocal concept of being in three separate but related contexts: the natural knowledge of God, the primary object of the human intellect and divine simplicity. All three discussions are closely connected, as Scotus’s own numerous cross-references indicate. The first, on natural knowledge of God, is a lengthy, critical examination of Henry’s position and contains Scotus’s most sustained arguments for univocity.12 After a detailed and systematic summary of Henry’s account of our knowledge of God, Scotus replies that, while agreeing with Henry that such knowledge is possible, he departs from his position on five points. In the second of these five points, Scotus maintains against Henry that God is known not only in a concept analogous with, but also in one univocal to, creatures. It is an important but at times overlooked point that Scotus is not here rejecting the traditional view, upheld by Henry, that we have proper notions of God and creatures united by analogy or attribution. Rather, he is rejecting Henry’s view that there can be only such proper concepts united only in that way. Scotus’s point against Henry is that when perfections such as being and goodness are conceived in their utmost generality, they must be univocal not analogous notions. The precise target of Scotus’s attack, then, is not Henry’s commitment to a traditional doctrine of analogy, a version of which they both concede, but his conclusion that such excludes any univocal conception of being. In an annotation to his criticism of Henry, Scotus at one point itemizes as many as ten arguments in favour of univocity, but gives five main proofs in the body of his discussion. Three of these are generally singled out as most important. The first of the five, the so-called arguments from ‘certain and doubtful concepts’, Scotus’s own contemporaries labelled the ‘Achilles’ of his position. It runs as follows: Major: An intellect certain about one concept, but doubtful about others, has a concept about which it is certain that is different from the concepts about which it is doubtful. Minor: We can be certain that God is a being, but doubt whether God is infinite or finite being. ∴The concept of being is different from the concept of infinite or finite being, and hence univocal, since asserted of both. Scotus takes the major premiss to be evident, for one cannot be both certain and doubtful of the same concept. That is, one and the same concept predicated of the same subject cannot result in a proposition whose truth is both certain and doubtful. The minor premiss is de facto true, because past thinkers, such as the pre-Socratics, never doubted that the first principle was a being, but disagreed as to whether it was even material or immaterial, much less finite or infinite. Since the concept of being is different from those of infinite and finite being, but obviously predicated of both, it must be univocal. Scotus’s point, which he establishes more explicitly in the ensuing arguments, is that some univocal notion of being is presupposed in any natural knowledge of God. Ultimately, however much one doubts whether the concepts of infinite being or uncaused cause apply truly to God, such concepts are doubtful with respect to something that is certain. To be doubtful in all respects of some notion of God is simply to concede that one has no meaningful concept at all. While Scotus has formulated his argument in sufficiently general terms to give it a universal force and appeal, he has none the less engineered it to expose what he sees as a fundamental absurdity lurking in Henry’s analogously common concept of being. In effect, Scotus has crafted the minor premiss around Henry’s analogous concept, substituting his own terminology of infinite and finite being for Henry’s corresponding notions of negatively and privatively undetermined being. According to Henry, this analogously common notion of being is so abstract that we are in doubt as to whether it is a concept of negatively or privatively undetermined being. At the same time, Henry denies that there is any concept of being apart from these two proper concepts about which we are in doubt. Scotus’s argument points out the inconsistency of these two claims: Henry must either concede that we have no certain knowledge of being at all in this analogous concept, for he allows only the two proper concepts of which we are admittedly doubtful, or that we are both certain and doubtful of the same concept. Thus, Henry’s abstract, indeterminate notion of being is either vacuous or else it must be distinct from, and hence common to, either of the concepts proper to God and creature. Recall that Henry’s explanation was that there is no concept of being distinct from these two proper ones, but only a confused notion of both which appears univocal owing to their similarity. Accordingly, Henry would reply to Scotus that we are not certain of some distinct, common concept, as Scotus concludes, but only of a confused notion that seemed common. Scotus perceives Henry’s manoeuvre as introducing scepticism at the most fundamental level of human knowledge. According to Scotus, it would destroy all univocity, for any allegedly univocal concept could always be denied on the grounds it was not one but two very similar notions which merely seemed to be one. Scotus’s evident point is that if univocity cannot be ascertained with certainty at the level of our most abstract concepts, which are therefore primary, simple and irreducible, then it can never be determined. Furthermore, according to Henry, these two proper concepts of being must be ultimate and hence wholly simple—otherwise they would be resolvable into more primitive notions—and are therefore known in their totality and distinctly or not at all. Therefore, either they will always be seen as one or never will be, for, being wholly simple, no distinguishing element can be discovered in them which was not evident in the first place. Finally, either they were initially seen as wholly different concepts of being proper to God and creatures, and then it seems impossible in view of their disparity that they could have ever been confused as one, or they were seen in a relation of similarity owing to analogy. In the latter case they could not be initially known as one, for any two things seen as united in some relation must first be known as distinct. Therefore, these two notions would never appear to be one, simple concept, but only as distinct under a relation of similarity. Scotus’s first argument, then, attempts to draw out the apparent inconsistency in Henry’s open admission, on the one side, that the intellect can conceive of being without determining it to God or creature, and his emphatic denial, on the other, that there is any concept of being distinct from those proper to God and creature. Scotus argues that Henry cannot claim that this indeterminate conception contains any certain knowledge of being at all unless he admits that it is a concept distinct from the concepts of being proper to God and creature. The reason is that, by Henry’s own admission, the intellect is not certain at this point that it has either proper concept, for it has not yet distinguished between the two. It thus is either certain of no concept of being or is certain and doubtful of the same concept. Henry’s device of making this analogous concept an apparently common and univocal concept, which is then later discerned to be two proper notions, collapses under scrutiny. Even if the simplicity of these two proper concepts of being did not make it impossible for them to be confused at one time and distinguished at another, they can only be seen as similar, and hence one, after first having been known as distinct and proper. As an epistemological explanation for the natural origin of our proper concept of God, Henry’s analogously common notion simply begs the question. It presupposes the very proper concept of God that it is supposed to explain. In his second argument, Scotus is explicit that denial of a univocal concept renders natural knowledge of God impossible. Specifically, Scotus attacks Henry’s position on the grounds that no creature can be the immediate cause of a concept which is both simple and wholly proper to God. Yet this is Henry’s only available account for the natural origins of our knowledge of God, given that he admits only two proper and simple concepts of being and excludes any which is common. Scotus maintains that it is patently absurd to hold that a creature can directly cause a simple and wholly proper concept of God, simply because such cannot be the concept of anything contained within the creature. Scotus argues that an object can only cause a concept of that which it contains either as an essential part (e.g. its differentia or genus) or virtually (e.g. an essential property). Obviously, the creature contains nothing proper to God as an essential part. Similarly, a creature cannot virtually contain anything proper to God, for one thing virtually contains another as the naturally prior contains the posterior or the cause its effect. For instance, premisses virtually contain their conclusions in the sense that their greater truth and certitude has the ‘power’ (virtus) to produce or cause certitude of the conclusion. The creature, however, is naturally posterior and inferior to divine nature as its effect and therefore cannot virtually contain anything proper to God. Rather, just the reverse is true; God virtually contains the creature. Thus, if a creature can produce any concept of God at all, it must be one that is common to both, which Henry denies. Scotus pursues a similar line of reasoning in his fourth proof, which examines the commonly admitted basis for natural knowledge of God, the so-called ‘pure perfections’ (perfectiones simpliciter), such as intellect, will or wisdom. Scotus argues that either these perfections have some meaning common to God and creature or not. If not, this is either because they are wholly proper to creatures, which no one admits, or they are wholly proper to God. If they are wholly proper to God, then they are not attributed to God because they are pure perfections, but are rather pure perfections because they are attributed to God. This, however, would violate the traditional and universally accepted procedure given by Anselm for determining what can be assigned to the divine nature. According to Anselm, we attribute to God those perfections which are pure in the sense that they contain of themselves no imperfection. As defined by Anselm, such a perfection is ‘what absolutely taken is better to be than not’.13 (For instance, colours are not pure perfections, since it is not absolutely better to be coloured than not.) But on Anselm’s definition, one can determine what is a pure perfection without any reference to God. That is, on the received and accepted account of natural knowledge of God, something is first determined to constitute a pure perfection and then on that basis attributed to God, not the reverse. Consequently, something is not a pure perfection precisely because it is attributed to God but is such prior to that attribution. Pure perfections must therefore have some meaning that is common apart from the meaning it has as attributed and proper to God alone. Once again Scotus argues that some common and hence univocal notion is presupposed by our analogous, proper concepts of God. In this case, the traditional doctrine of ‘pure perfections’ is seen to entail just such a common notion. If there were no common but only proper concepts of these perfections, then they could not be known apart from their attribution to God. Yet, exactly the opposite is prescribed by the traditional concept of pure perfections, for they are known independently of and prior to any relation to God. Scotus makes the same point in a confirmation of this argument, this time using the equally traditional Dionysian procedures of removal and eminence. According to Scotus, all metaphysical enquiry about God proceeds by taking some formal notion (ratio formalis) and removing from it all imperfections with which it is found in a creature. For example, we take the formal notion of the will—a power for opposites—and remove any limitations connected with its existence in a creature, such as variability in its act of willing over time. We then attribute will to God by conceiving of it not just as lacking imperfection, but as possessing the greatest degree of perfection, such that it is infinitely powerful. This process presumes that the formal notion of the will which has been stripped of creaturely limitations is the same notion of will as is assigned the highest degree of perfection. If this is not the case, so that nothing of the notion of will abstracted from creatures remains when we attribute will to God, then perfections found in creatures tell us nothing about the perfection of God. As Scotus puts it, we could then no more say that the divine nature was an intellect, a will or wise than it was a rock. That is, the distinction traditionally made within creatures between pure perfections, which can be applied to God, and their other formal features, which cannot, would be meaningless on denial of any common notion of such perfections. If to be a ‘perfection’ has absolutely no common meaning as applied to God and creature, then perfection in creatures becomes tantamount to imperfection. Thus, ‘wisdom’ would be no more applicable to God than ‘rock’. The point of Scotus’s fourth proof and its confirmation is that the traditional concepts and methods that are the accepted basis for natural knowledge of God presuppose a common notion of being and other such perfections. Elsewhere Scotus is more pointed: ‘All masters and theologians seem to use a concept common to God and creature, although they deny this verbally when they apply it’.14 There can be little doubt, however, that Scotus has Henry specifically in view. This is particularly evident in Scotus’s corroborative argument based on the Dionysian procedure, from which, as shown, Henry constructed his own three-stage ascent to God. Scotus has pared this procedure to the two minimal steps of removal and eminence, which correspond respectively to what Henry calls knowing God generalissime and generalius. (In his third point of disagreement with Henry, Scotus discards Henry’s final stage of conceiving God as wholly simple through negation and limits our highest simple concept of God to that of a pre-eminent or infinite being.) Scotus’s point is that the Dionysian procedure requires that the notion or meaning (ratio) yielded by removal be the same notion to which eminence is applied, otherwise the first step would simply have no relevance to the second. Removal and eminence would not, as all theologians assume, form two stages of a continuous process of reasoning leading from a knowledge of creatures to God. As Scotus says, ‘There would be no such process, but inquiry of this kind would have to be avoided’ (nullus esset talis processus, sed vitanda esset talis inquisitio).15 But this is exactly the situation in Henry’s interpretation of the Dionysian process, for he holds that the ratio of a perfection arrived at by the abstraction and removal of created limitations is wholly other than that to which eminence is applied (illud est alterius et alterius rationis). Distinguishing between the epistemological functions of the ways of causality and eminence, Scotus denies that these two diverse rationes can be sufficiently connected by means of causal dependence, as Henry maintains. Something is not formally or essentially predicated of God, in the manner of a pure perfection, simply because it is an effect. A rock is an effect of God as exemplary cause in so far as it has an idea in the divine mind, yet the formal notion of ‘rock’ cannot be predicated of God in the same way as that of goodness, justice, truth or any other such perfection. Rather, perfections found in creatures must have some univocally common concept if they are to be predicated essentially of God as divine attributes, whereas things predicated of God as their cause need not have such a common notion. Henry cannot therefore use the way of causality to underwrite the way of eminence, for the epistemological requirements for the latter are greater than for the former. Thus, he must admit that his first stage issues in some notion common to God and creature. The force of all this argumentation is that Henry cannot consistently uphold natural knowledge of the divine nature and then deny that being has some concept common to creatures and God. If being and the other perfections have only two simple and wholly diverse rationes or notions, one proper to creatures and the other to God, then creatures simply cannot yield any concepts relevant to the divine nature. The causal dependence of the creature on God is irrelevant here, because being, goodness and such are seen as divine attributes revelatory of God’s nature, not because they are effects, but because they are perfections of a certain sort. Henry himself seems to have appreciated the limitations of the way of causality and attempted to supply the required conceptual unity by means of an ‘analogously common notion’, in which the two proper and diverse rationes were conceived in a confused way so as to appear univocal. Scotus saw this as an unworkable contrivance vulnerable to the most obvious of absurdities, such as that the intellect could lack certitude about its most fundamental concepts. In the face of Henry’s strained and artificial attempts to sustain natural knowledge of God while denying any bona fide common concept, Scotus replaced Henry’s ‘analogous’, confused notion of two proper rationes that appeared univocal with a distinct concept of a single, simple ratio that in fact was univocal. Accordingly, where for Henry being conceived in its utmost generality and community was a complex and confused concept, and the concepts proper to God and creatures were simple and distinct, for Scotus just the reverse became the case. The most general and indeterminate concept of being was irreducibly simple and common, and thus known in a distinct rather than a confused way, while the concepts of being proper to God and creature were complex, or at least not irreducibly simple. By admitting a simple and univocal concept of being, Scotus provided a true conceptual community between God and creature and placed the project of natural knowledge of the divine nature on a firm epistemological footing. Scotus’s univocal concept of being clearly had great epistemological advantages over Henry’s revised version of analogy. It eliminated Henry’s unsatisfactory attempt to make an unstable conflation of equivocal notions do the epistemological work of a genuinely univocal concept merely because such a conflation appeared univocal. Univocity not only provided a true conceptual community between God and creature, but made being suitable as a primary object of the mind by rendering its conception certain, simple and prior. In granting univocity, Scotus replaced Henry’s two concepts of being with a single one, his doubtful concepts with a certain one, his relational concepts with an absolute one, and his confused concepts with a distinct one. Yet these epistemological advantages of univocity came at a very high metaphysical cost, which is precisely why Henry went to such extreme lengths to deny that there was in truth any such concept. The cost of Scotus’s univocal concept of being, as one objector put it, was nothing less than ‘to destroy the whole of philosophy’.16 While Scotus portrayed univocity as contained with the tradition of natural theology, so that it could be found in ‘arguments frequently made or implied by doctors and the saints’, he had to reconcile it with a daunting array of philosophical authorities to the contrary. Scotus himself did not fail to raise and confront the various conflicts that a univocal concept of being appeared to present to the philosophical tradition, particularly that of Aristotle. Thus, for instance, univocity would remove a pillar of Aristotle’s metaphysics, namely, that ‘being is said in many ways’, which meant that being was not univocal but a type of equivocal. It would destroy the categories as ultimate classifications or genera, for they would become species under the higher class of being. Similarly, it would render the five predicables of Porphyry inadequate, for being would form a sixth universal. Worst of all, God would enter a community of being with creatures. The divine nature would not be a wholly simple and pure act, but a composite of being and difference. All of these impossible conclusions really expressed one and the same difficulty in different ways. Scotus’s univocal concept of being appeared to his contemporaries to destroy all of philosophy— Aristotle’s conception of metaphysics, the categories, the predicables, and even the distinction between God and creatures—because it appeared to destroy being itself as a transcendental. On the common view, a ‘univocal transcendental’ was a contradiction in terms, precisely because the categories or supreme genera were regarded as the highest classes of univocal predicates. Since a transcendental was by definition beyond the categories, it could not be univocal. This conviction was clearly stated by Peter Olivi, a theologian writing in the generation before Scotus: ‘The nature of being, one, and true is so common to all things that it transcends the nature of a genus and everything univocal.’17 In other words, on the common view, univocity destroyed being as a transcendental because it reduced being to a genus. Indicative of this common view was the use of Aristotle’s claim that being and one could not fall under a genus as a standard authority against univocity. This conventional identification of univocal and generic concepts resulted from the requirement, explicitly invoked by Henry in this connection, that there must be a strict correspondence between real and conceptual community. Any real, univocal concept, as opposed to a purely logical or mind-dependent notion, had to be based on some type of corresponding real community or agreement. Since the categories by definition constituted the highest classes of reality, they formed the outer boundaries of real agreement. Accordingly, there could be no univocal concept of anything more universal than these categories or genera, for to such a notion would correspond no real community. If this was true of the categories, so much more of God and creatures, whose real diversity was immeasurably greater than that between any two genera. The challenge facing Scotus was thus clear if his doctrine of univocity was not to destroy all of philosophy by reducing being to a genus. He had to explain how there could be a truly univocal notion of being to which there corresponded no real agreement. Scotus himself was completely aware that this was the universally perceived impasse to making being and the other transcendentals univocal. The central difficulty to be overcome was that ‘God and creatures are wholly diverse in reality, agreeing in no reality…and nevertheless agree in one concept’ (Deus et creatura realiter sunt primo diversa, in nulla realitate convenientia…et tamen conveniunt in uno conceptu).18 This is the problem Henry saw but could not solve. He could not see how to unite God and creatures under some common concept of being without also uniting them in some common reality, that is, without bringing them under being as a genus. For Henry the one required the other, as exemplified by Plato, who held being was univocal because it was a genus (Plato ponens ens esse genus, tanquam sit nominis entis unum aliquid commune conceptum).19 Because Henry could not resolve this difficulty, he tried to construct a type of conceptual community by conflating proper concepts rather than admit a single, common one. Scotus was the first to find a way around this impasse, and his solution involved some of the most innovative aspects of his metaphysics. Scotus’s solution is found in his question on divine simplicity, which he specifically formulated to draw out just his difficulty: ‘Is it compatible with divine simplicity that God, or anything formally predicated of God, be in a genus?’20 As the lead objection to the question makes clear, the issue is whether Scotus’s position of univocity, previously established in distinction 3, entails that God is in a genus. It seems that [God is in a genus], because God is formally a being. Being, however, signifies a concept predicated of God quidditatively (in quid). This concept of being is not proper to God, but common to God and creature, as was said in distinction 3. Therefore, in order for this common concept to become proper [to God] it must be determined by some determining concept. That determining concept is related to the concept of being just as a qualitative concept (quale) to a quidditative concept (quid), and consequently as the concept of a differentia to a genus. (Ord. 1 d.8 n.39 (Vat. 4.169)) The above line of argument is precisely why Henry so adamantly refused to admit both a common and proper concept of divine being and allowed only a proper one. It is impossible to admit both concepts of God without conceding that the proper one itself is a composite of common and distinguishing notions which must be related in effect as potency and act, or as the objection puts it, as determined and determining. This is simply to admit that the common notion is a genus and the distinguishing one a differentia. This conclusion follows especially from Scotus’s position, because he admits that the common concept of being applies to God quidditatively, which means that it is the concept of a ‘what’ (quid). The distinguishing concept will accordingly specify or qualify being as a kind (quale), so that the two will conform exactly to the classical relation of genus to differentia as quid to quale. In his lengthy reply to the objection, Scotus concedes that there is a common concept of being and that it is ‘contracted’ or determined by the notions of infinite and finite to result in concepts proper to God and creatures. He even concedes that the common and contracting or determining concepts are related as quid and quale. He denies, however, that they are respectively concepts of a genus and its differentiae. As for the first point, Scotus argues that the univocal concept of being cannot be that of a genus. The reason is that being so conceived is common to both the finite (creatures) and the infinite (God), and this community exceeds that of any genus. No generic concept can be so common, for by definition the concept of a genus is that of a reality potential to some further, perfecting reality added by the differentia. What is infinite in being, however, cannot be potential to any further reality. Accordingly, since a genus by definition involves potentiality, the concept of being common to God and creatures cannot be that of a genus, for the infinite being of God can never be conceived, however commonly or indeterminately, as some reality potential to further perfection. The second part of Scotus’s response is that the determining concepts of infinite and finite do not correspond to those of specific differentiae. Here the reason is that infinity and finitude do not indicate the addition of some reality outside that given in the common concept of being, but only degrees or grades of perfection intrinsic to the reality of being. The concept of a differentia, however, is always of some reality outside of and added to that of the genus. Scotus’s response relies on his technical conception of a formal, extramental distinction of two realities, on the one hand, and his socalled ‘modal’ distinction between a reality and its intrinsic grades or modes of perfection, on the other. As for the first, Scotus recognizes within one and the same thing (res) a distinction of realities, formalities or entities (realitates, formalitates, entitates), as he variously calls them, corresponding to our different concepts of that thing. Such realities are said to be ‘formally distinct’, but really identical or united within one and the same thing.21 Such a ‘formal distinction’ is for Scotus not merely conceptual but real in the sense that it obtains prior to any consideration of the intellect. Scotus holds that at minimum this formal distinction between two realities is required to provide a real basis for the concepts of genus and differentia. According to Scotus, this degree of distinction is minimally needed to sustain any real relationship of potency to act required for genus and difference. The concept of a genus is taken from the one reality, which is perfected by and potential to, the formally distinct reality from which the difference is taken. Scotus argues that unless genus and differentia are at least formally distinct realities, the concept of the genus would coincide with the entire reality of the species, rendering the addition of specific differentia in a definition redundant. In addition to this formal distinction of realities in one and the same thing, Scotus recognizes a lesser distinction between a reality and its degree of perfection, or in Scotus’s terminology, its intrinsic mode. This is the distinction, for instance, between an accidental form, such as white, and the degrees of intensity with which it is actually found. For example, white can be differentiated into degrees or shades, yet these degrees do not form different species of colour. Or again, a species of precious stone, such as diamond, can be distinguished according to the various degrees of perfection that make up the gemmologist’s scale, from imperfect to flawless, yet these gradations do not each one constitute a different species of gem. Such grades or modes are said to be ‘intrinsic’ because they do not add, as a specific differentia does to a genus, a new reality extrinsic to the form of which they are the grades. They rather indicate different quantitative degrees, as it were, of one and the same reality or form. Scotus’s model here is the medieval theory of intension and remission of accidental forms. According to this theory, accidental forms, such as colours, heat, and cognitive and moral habits, are said to have a certain extension or ‘latitude’ (latitudo) within which they can be increased (intensio) or decreased (remissio) without a change in the essence or species of the form itself.22 In light of these technical refinements, Scotus’s answer to the above objection is that the relationship of the common concept of being to its contracting or determining notions of infinity and finitude does not correspond to that of genus and differentia, for this requires two formally distinct realities related as potency and act. The common concept of being cannot involve the element of potentiality found in a genus, for this would render it inapplicable in any way to the divine being, and hence not common to God and creatures. Rather, being and its qualifying concepts of infinity and finitude correspond to the relation of a reality and its intrinsic modes of perfection. The categorical analogue for the common concept of transcendental being is not therefore a genus and its specific differences, but rather a specific form and its grades of intension and remission. Clearly, Scotus thinks he has found in this categorical analogue of intension and remission a model for common and differentiating concepts which escapes the real relation of potency and act required in genus and differentia. The various degrees of intensity are real but not specific differentiae of a form. As it actually exists, white is found in different degrees of brilliance or intensity, and these are real differentiae of that form. Yet this diversity within the form of whiteness is not one produced by specific differentiae, otherwise every shade of white would constitute a different species of colour. Rather, the intensive grades of a form result from differentiae less than specific, albeit real, because they are intrinsic to the nature of the form itself. Specific differentiae by contrast always add a new reality in kind. By appealing to a recognized distinction within the categories between a form and its degrees, which is less than that of genus and differentia, Scotus thinks he can explain how the common concept of being can be ‘contracted’ by the finite and infinite without reducing being to a genus. Yet Scotus realizes that this reply does not fully resolve the difficulty of the real basis for this common concept of being, so that univocity still poses a threat to divine simplicity. The problem is that Scotus holds that the concept of being univocally common to God and creatures is both real and distinct from the concept of infinite being proper to God. Since this common concept is real, it must be taken from some corresponding reality in God that is common. The original objection now reappears, because Scotus still has to admit that there will be two realities in God, one which is common to account for the real, common concept of being and another to account for the proper concept of God. These realities will be related as potency to act and hence as genus and differentia. The problem thus seems inescapable. If the common concept of being is real, it must be of something real in God. But to admit a common reality in God is nothing less than to place God under a genus. Scotus himself sharply focuses the difficulty: ‘Here is doubted how a real concept common to God and creature is possible unless it is taken from some reality of the same genus.’23 Scotus replies that both the common concept of being univocal to God and creatures and the concept proper to God are taken from one and the same reality of infinite being. The implicit assumption of the objection denied by Scotus is that in order for a common concept to be real, it must always be an adequate or perfect concept of the reality conceived. Rather, the common and proper concepts of God are related as imperfect and perfect conceptions of one and the same reality, not as perfect or adequate concepts of two distinct realities. Scotus’s response exploits his distinction between a reality and its intrinsic mode or grade of perfection to account for how one and the same reality can cause both a perfect concept, which is proper, and an imperfect concept, which is common. For example, some particular instance of white existing at the tenth grade of intensity can be conceived perfectly, and then it is known according to the degree of perfection with which it is actually found. That same instance of white can be conceived imperfectly, and then only the nature of ‘whiteness’ as such, apart from the real condition of its grade of intensity, is known. The former is a proper concept of whiteness in some determinate grade, the latter a concept common to the various instances of white differing in degrees. No concept common as a genus, however, can ever result simply from conceiving a reality in an imperfect way. Rather, as just seen, to the concepts of genus and differentia there must correspond two different realities, and, in each case, there can be a perfect and adequate concept of the corresponding reality. As applied to the renewed form of the initial objection, Scotus’s distinction means that our univocally common concept of being does not entail a corresponding common reality in God, because that common concept is not a perfect or adequate concept of any reality. Rather, it is an imperfect concept of the reality of infinite being proper to God or of finite being proper to creatures. To put it another way, that concept of being is common to God and creatures because in it the two wholly diverse realities of infinite and finite being are conceived in an imperfect way. In an annotation to this reply, Scotus expresses in technical language his answer to the difficulty of the real basis for the univocal concept of being: Note [in this answer] how there can be a primary intention [i.e. a real as opposed to a secondary or merely logical concept] of ‘a’ and ‘b’ that is common and nothing of a single nature corresponds in reality, but two wholly diverse formal objects [i.e. God and creature] are understood in one first intention, although either imperfectly. (Ordinatio 1 d.8 n.136 (Vat. 4.221)) This constitutes Scotus’s ultimate resolution of the metaphysical impasse to a univocal concept of being. It consists of recognizing a distinction that is real but less than that of two different realities. Only given such a lesser distinction is it possible to provide an ontological foundation for common and proper concepts that not are related as genus and differentia. Scotus himself is clear that the solution to the objective basis for a univocal concept of being requires such a lesser distinction, namely, that of a reality and its intrinsic mode: ‘Therefore, a distinction is required between that from which the common concept [of being] is taken and that from which the proper concept is taken, not a distinction of reality and reality, but of reality and the proper and intrinsic mode of the same reality’ (Ord. 1 d.8 n.139 [13.29] 4, 222). In Scotus’s view, Henry and his contemporaries were led to deny univocity because they demanded that every distinction in real concepts be based upon a corresponding distinction of realities. They failed to see that the boundaries between our concepts can be more refined, so that they do not always answer to a distinction of realities but can be based on one between a reality and its degree of perfection. Such is sufficient for perfect and imperfect conceptions of the same reality, which are related as proper and common concepts of it. A concept of being which is common by virtue of its imperfection is all that is required for it to be univocal to God and creature. Having solved this problem, however, Scotus faced a final hurdle to univocity in the authority of Aristotle, who repeatedly states that being is a type of equivocal. From this it is concluded that being cannot be univocal. Scotus replies that this reasoning assumes that analogy and univocity are incompatible, which he denies. First, according to Aristotle himself, there is a first in every genus, which is the measure of all in that class (Metaphysics 10.1 (1052b18)), such as is the case with human being in the genus of animal. Despite this relationship of attribution, in which human being constitutes the primary instance of animal to which all others are referred, Scotus argues that all still admit a single notion of animal univocal to all in the genus. Similarly, the order and attribution existing between the proper and analogous concepts of being is consistent with some univocal notion common to both. Second, the real or natural philosopher (i.e. the physicist, who deals with material beings) takes as equivocal the diverse genera which the logician sees as univocal, for in reality only the form of the ultimate species is truly univocal. So, Scotus concludes, all of the citations of Aristotle where being is claimed to be analogous should be read as referring to a real diversity of beings among which there is attribution, which is none the less consistent with some univocally common concept abstracted from them.24 Scotus’s second response will form the basis for ensuing attempts by Scotists to reconcile his doctrine of univocity with Aquinas’s position on analogy. In reconciling the two views, Aquinas is portrayed as maintaining real analogy among beings, while Scotus is seen as holding a purely conceptual unity. CONCLUSION There can be no question that in maintaining a concept of being univocally common to God and creatures, Scotus moved beyond the common view of the transcendentals in a dramatic and important way. The doctrine of univocity counts as one of the genuinely original results of Latin medieval philosophy, and its impact was felt well into the modern period. At the same time, Scotus’s achievement depended in an intimate way on prior developments by Henry of Ghent. As has been repeatedly stressed, this is in fact so true that Scotus’s doctrine of univocity should properly be seen not as a complete rejection but as a revision of Henry’s own unique understanding of analogy. Specifically, Scotus’s simple, univocal concept was a modification of Henry’s revised ‘analogously common’ notion of being. Henry’s extended sense of an ‘analogous concept’ had many features in common with Scotus’s univocal one: it was a conception of being as completely undetermined, the result of abstraction from creatures, and the epistemological foundation for natural knowledge of the divine nature. Scotus accepted these aspects of Henry’s indeterminate conception of being, and then argued that Henry could not consistently deny that such a conception formed a truly unified, distinct, and common notion unto itself. Scotus accordingly abandoned Henry’s analogous notion of being, but did so by making it into the very univocal concept Henry claimed it appeared to be, but in truth was not. In other words, the univocal concept of being for which Scotus argues is, in many important respects, the very one that Henry described but rejected as merely apparent: a single, simple concept common to God and creature and different from concepts of both (aliquis unicus intellectus simplex communis ad Deum et creaturam, alius praeter intellectum Dei aut creaturae).25 These words of Henry answer quite closely to the concept demonstrated by Scotus, particularly in his first argument for univocity. To be sure, in upholding the univocal notion which Henry had rejected Scotus had to move beyond Henry’s understanding of univocity in an important and creative way, most notably by detaching univocal community from the ontological limitations of a genus. On the other hand, it is not true that Scotus advanced a univocal concept of being which Henry had simply failed to see altogether; Henry saw a good part of it, but could not see how to sustain it. The close connection between Scotus and Henry examined here in their disagreement over the nature of transcendental concepts is found to various degrees in many other areas of their thought. For example, Scotus rejects more and appropriates less in his attacks on Henry’s version of Augustinian illumination and his theory of exemplar causality, according to which creatures have a necessary and eternal ‘essential being’ (esse essentiae) as divine ideas. In other areas, Scotus appropriates more and rejects less, such as in his proofs for the existence of God. In nearly all cases, however, a proper understanding of Scotus will depend on appreciating his relationship to Henry. NOTES 1 Henry, Summa a.22 q.5 ([13.2] I f. 134v). 2 L.Hödl, ‘Introduction à l’edition de la Summa d’Henry de Gand’, in Macken’s edition of Henry’s Summa articles 31–4 [13.3] xiii–xiv. 3 Roger Marston, Quaestiones disputatae De emanatione divine, De statu naturae lapsae, De anima, Grottaferrata, 1932, p. 412. 4 Aquinas’s own position is more nuanced, but this is the aspect of it stressed by Henry. See J.Wippel [13.27] 215–42. 5 Henry’s express treatment of analogy is given in Summa a.21 q.2 ([13.2] I f. 123v–125v). 6 See Aristotle, Categories 1 (1a1–15) and especially Metaphysics 4.1 (1003a32– b5). For Aristotle’s notion of equivocity, which the scholastics called analogy, see J. Owens, The Doctrine of Being in the Aristotelian Metaphysics, 3rd edn, Toronto, 1978, pp. 107–36. 7 Cf. Henry, Quodlibeta 13 q.10 ([13.3] (1985) 65–7). 8 Henry’s account of natural knowledge of the divine quid est occupies Summa a.24, especially qq. 4, 7 and 9. See the second article by Pegis in [13.23]. 9 Summa a.24 q.6 ([13.2] I f. 142v). 10 Summa a.24 q.6 ([13.2] I f. 142v). 11 For these two quotations, see Henry Summa a.24 q.7 ([13.2] I f. 144v). 12 This part of Scotus’s discussion, which is the basis of what follows, is found translated according to the Vivès edition in Wolter [13.35] 13–33. 13 Scotus cites Anselm, Monologion c. 15 (ed. Schmitt [6.11] I: 28–9) in this connection, but the association of this doctrine with Anselm was a commonplace. 14 Duns Scotus 1 Lectura d.3 n.29 ([13.29] 16.235). 15 1 Lectura d.8 n.79 ([13.29] 17.27). 16 1 Lectura d.3 n.105 ([13.29] 16.264). 17 S.Brown, ‘Petrus Joannis Olivi, Quaestiones logicales: critical text’, Traditio 52 (1986): 36–7. 18 1 Lectura d.8 n.129 ([13.29] 17.46). 19 Summa a.21 q.2 ([13.2] I f. 124v). 20 Scotus, 1 Ordinatio d.8 p. 1 q.3 ([13.29] 4.169–230). 21 See the entries under ‘Formal Distinction’ in the bibliography. Scotus varied both his terminology and definition of the formal distinction between Oxford and Paris, but this does not affect the present point. 22 On this theory, see for example J.Wippel, ‘Godfrey of Fontaines on intension and remission of accidental forms’, Franciscan Studies 39 (1979): 343–55. 23 1 Ordinatio d.8 n.137 ([13.29] 4.221). 24 1 Ordinatio d.8 n.48, 83 ([13.29] 4.172, 191–2). 25 Summa a.21 q.2 ([13.2] I f. 124v). BIBLIOGRAPHY Henry of Ghent Original language editions 13.1 Quodlibeta Magistri Henrici Goethals a Gandavo Doctoris Solemnis, Paris, I. Badius, 1518; repr. in 2 vols, Louvain, Bibliothèque, SJ, 1961. (Referred to as the Badius edition, after its printer.) 13.2 Summae quaestionum ordinariarum, Paris, 1520; repr. in 2 vols, St. Bonaventure, NY, Franciscan Institute, 1953 (Summa). 13.3 Henrici de Gandavo opera omnia, general editor R.Macken, Leuven, University Press, 1979–. (The planned critical edition is expected to run to some 40 volumes including several on the manuscripts of Henry’s works and his life. To date eight Quodlibeta have appeared: I (ed. R.Macken, 1979), II (ed. R.Wielockx, 1983), VI (ed. G.Wilson, 1987), VII (ed. G. Wilson, 1991), IX (ed. R.Macken, 1983), X (ed. R.Macken, 1981), XII qq. 1–30 (ed. J.Decorte, 1987), XII q. 31=Tractatus super facto praelatorum et fratrum (ed. L.Hödl, 1989) and XIII (ed. J.Decorte, 1985). The edition of the Summa is also under way, and two volumes have appeared: articles 31–4 (ed. R.Macken, 1991) and articles 35–40 (ed. G.Wilson, 1994).) English translations 13.4 Wippel, J.F. and Wolter, A.B. (eds) Medieval Philosophy, New York, Free Press, 1969, pp. 378–89. (Translation of Henry of Ghent’s proof for die existence of God in Summa a.22 q.4). 13.5 Quodlibetal Questions on Free Will, trans. R.J.Teske, Milwaukee, Wis., Marquette University Press, 1993. Bibliographies 13.6 Laarmann, M. ‘Bibliographia auxiliaris de vita, operibus et doctrina Henrici de Gandavo’, Franzikanische Studien 73 (1991): 324–66. 13.7 Macken, R. Bibliographie d’Henri de Gand, Leuven, 1994. (More a bibliography of late thirteenth-century philosophy. Inaccurate in places.) Studies 13.8 Brown, J.V. ‘Duns Scotus on Henry of Ghent’s arguments for divine illumination: the statement of the case’, Vivarium 14 (1976): 94–113. 13.9 ——‘Duns Scotus on the possibility of knowing genuine truth: the reply to Henry of Ghent in the Lectura prima, and in the Ordinatio’, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 51 (1984): 136–82. 13.10 Brown, S. ‘Avicenna and the unity of the concept of being: the interpretations of Henry of Ghent, Duns Scotus, Gerard of Bologna and Peter Aureoli’, Franciscan Studies 25 (1965): 117–50. 13.11 ——‘Henry of Ghent’, in Individuation in Scholasticism: the Later Middle Ages and the Counter-Reformation, 1150–1650, ed. J.J.E.Gracia, Albany, NY, State University of New York Press, 1994, pp. 195–220. 13.12 Dumont, S.D. ‘The quaestio si est and the metaphysical proof for the existence of God according to Henry of Ghent and J.Duns Scotus’, Franziskanische Studien 66 (1984): 335–67. 13.13 ——‘Time, contradiction and free will in the late thirteenth century’, Documenti e studi sulla Tradizione Filosofica Medievale 3.2(1992): 199–235. 13.14 Macken, R. ‘La temporalité radicale de la créature selon Henri de Gand’, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 38 (1971): 211–72. 13.15 ——‘La théorie de l’illumination divine dans la philosophie d’Henri de Gand’, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 39 (1972): 82–112. 13.16 ——‘La volonté humaine, faculté plus élevée que l’intelligence selon Henri de Gand’, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 42 (1975): 5–51. 13.17 ——‘The metaphysical proof for the existence of God in the philosophy of Henry of Ghent’, Franziskanische Studien 68 (1986): 247–60. 13.18 Marrone, S.P. Truth and Scientific Knowledge in the Thought of Henry of Ghent, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1985. 13.19 ——‘Matthew of Aquasparta, Henry of Ghent and Augustinian epistemology after Bonaventure’, Franziskanische Studien 65 (1983): 252–90. 13.20 ——‘Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus on the knowledge of being’, Speculum 63 (1988): 22–57. 13.21 Mediaevalia: Textos e Estudos (Porto), ed. M.Pachecho, 3 (1993). (Special issue devoted to Henry of Ghent.) 13.22 Paulus, J. Henri de Gand: Essai sur les tendances de sa métaphysique, Paris, Vrin, 1938. 13.23 Pegis, A. ‘Toward a new way to God: Henry of Ghent’, Mediaeval Studies 30 (1968): 226–47; 31 (1969): 93–116; 33 (1971): 158–79. 13.24 Porro, P. Enrico di Gand: La via delle proposizioni universali, Bari, 1993. (Contains complete bibliography on Henry, arranged chronologically.) 13.25 Wielockx, R. (ed.) Aegidii Romani Opera Omnia III.1: Apologia, Florence, Olschki, 1985. (Contains much material on Henry of Ghent, especially concerning his role in the condemnations of 1277 and the censure of Giles of Rome.) 13.26 Wippel, J.F. ‘The relationship between essence and existence in late thirteenth-century thought: Giles of Rome, Henry of Ghent, Godfrey of Fontaines, James of Viterbo’, in Philosophies of Existence: Ancient and Medieval, ed. P.Morewedge, New York, Fordham University Press, 1982, pp. 131–64. 13.27 ——‘Divine knowledge, divine power and human freedom in Thomas Aquinas and Henry of Ghent’, in Metaphysical Themes in Thomas Aquinas, Washington, DC, Catholic University of America Press, 1984, pp. 243–70. Duns Scotus Original language editions 13.28 Opera omnia. Editio nova iuxta editionem Waddingi XII tomos continentem a patribus Franciscanis de observantia accurante recognita, 26 vols, Paris, Vivès, 1891–5. (Vivès edition. Modernized reprint of the Wadding edition (Lyons, 1639). Contains many spurious works. For the certainly authentic works, see C.Balic, John Duns Scotus: Some Reflections on the Occasion of the Seventh Centenary of his Birth, Rome, 1966, pp. 29–44. Since the critical, Vatican edition is far from complete, this is still the only text for many of Scotus’s writings. Even for those texts which have been critically edited, the edition remains valuable for the scholia, parallel citations and commentaries by later Scotists.) 13.29 Opera omnia studio et cura Commissions Scotisticae ad fidem codicum edita, Vatican City, Typis Polyglottis Vaticanis, 1950–. (Vatican edition. Planned critical edition of Scotus’s writings. To date: vols 1–7=Ordinatio (to 2 d. 3); vols 16–19=Lectura.) 13.30 John Duns Scotus: a Treatise on God as First Principle, ed. A.B.Wolter, Chicago, Franciscan Herald Press, 1966; 2nd rev. edn, 1983. (The revised edition adds an extensive commentary.) 13.31 Obras del Doctor Sutil, Juan Duns Escoto: Cuestiones Cuodlibetales, ed. F. Alluntis, Madrid, Biblioteca De Autores Cristianos, 1968. (Revision of Vivès text of the Quodlibetal Questions.) English translations 13.32 A Scholastic Miscellany: Anselm to Ockham, ed. E.Fairweather, Philadelphia, Pa., Westminster Press, 1956, pp. 428–39. (Translation of Ordinatio question on whether God’s existence is self-evident.) 13.33 Contingency and Freedom: John Duns Scotus, Lectura I 39, trans. A.Vos, Dordrecht, Kluwer, 1994. (Translation of Lectura questions on divine foreknowledge.) 13.34 Duns Scotus on the Will and Morality, ed. and trans. A.B.Wolter, Washington, DC, Catholic University of America Press, 1987. 13.35 Duns Scotus, Philosophical Writings, trans. A.B.Wolter, Indianapolis, Ind. and Cambridge, Hackett, 1987. (Translation of selections from the Ordinatio with facing Latin text of the Vivès edition.) 13.36 Five Texts on the Medieval Problem of Universals, trans. P.V.Spade, Indianapolis, Ind. and Cambridge, Hackett, 1994, 57–113. (Translation of Ordinatio questions on the principle of individuation.) 13.37 God and Creatures: the Quodlibetal Questions, trans. F.Alluntis and A.B. Wolter, Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press, 1975; repr. Washington, DC, Catholic University of America Press, 1987. (Includes helpful glossary of Scotistic vocabulary.) 13.38 Wippel, J.F. and Wolter, A. (eds) [13.4] 402–19. (Lectura or early version of Scotus’s proof for the existence of God.) 13.39 Wolter, A. ‘Duns Scotus on the necessity of revealed knowledge’, Franciscan Studies 11 (1951): 231–71. (Translation of the prologue to the Ordinatio.) 13.40 Wolter, A. and Adams, M. ‘Duns Scotus’ Parisian proof for the existence of God’, Franciscan Studies 42 (1982): 248–321. 13.41 Wolter, A.B. and Frank, W.A. Duns Scotus, metaphysician, West Lafayette, Ind., Purdue University Press, 1995. (Selected texts with facing Latin and commentary.) Bibliographies 13.42 Schaefer, O. Bibliographia de vita operibus et doctrina Ioannis Duns Scott, Saec. XIX–XX, Rome, Orbis Catholicus-Herder, 1955. 13.43 ——‘Resenha abreviada da bibliographia escotista mais recente (1954–1966)’, Revistas Portuguesa de Filosofia 23 (1967): 338–63. 13.44 Cress, D. ‘Toward a bibliography on Duns Scotus on the existence of God’, Franciscan Studies 35 (1975): 45–65. Collections of articles (The first five items below are proceedings of the International Scotistic Congress (Congressus Scotisticus Internationalis) and contain many articles on all aspects of Scotus’s thought.) 13.45 De doctrina Ioannis Duns Scott, 4 vols, Rome, Cura Commissionis Scotisticae, 1968. 13.46 Deus et homo ad mentem I.Duns Scoti, Rome, Societas Internationalis Scotisticae, 1972. 13.47 Regnum hominis et regnum Dei, 2 vols, ed. C.Bérubé, Rome, Societas Internationalis Scotistica, 1978. 13.48 Homo et Mundus, ed. C.Bérubé, Rome, Societas Internationalis Scotistica, 1981. 13.49 Via Scoti. Methodologica ad mentem Joannis Duns Scoti, 2 vols, ed. L.Sileo, Rome, Edizioni Antonianum, 1995. 13.50 Duns Scotus, ed. A.B.Wolter, American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly, 67 (1993). 13.51 John Duns Scotus, 1265–1965, in J.K.Ryan and B.Bonansea (eds) Studies in Philosophy and the History of Philosophy 3, Washington, DC, Catholic University of America, 1965. 13.52 Metaphysik und Ethik bei Johannes Duns Scotus: Neue Forschungsperspektiven, ed. M.Dreyer and R.Wood, Leiden, E.J.Brill, 1996. 13.53 Philosophy of John Duns Scotus in Commemoration of the 700th Anniversary of his Birth, Monist 49 (1965). 13.54 Wolter, A.B. The Philosophical Theology of John Duns Scotus, ed. M.Adams, Ithaca, NY, Cornell University Press, 1990. (Collection of many of Wolter’s articles on Scotus.) General studies 13.55 Gilson, E. Jean Duns Scot: Introduction à ses positions fondamentales, Paris, Vrin, 1952. (A comprehensive book on Scotus’s philosophy, but of limited value owing to its failure to take account of Henry of Ghent.) 13.56 Honnefelder, L. Ens inquantum ens. Der Begriff des Seienden als solchen als Gegenstand der Metaphysik nach der Lehre des Johannes Duns Scotus (BGPTMA, n.f. 16), Münster, Aschendorff, 1979. (Extensive work on Scotus’s conception of the science of metaphysics.) 13.57 Wolter, A.B. The Transcendentals and their Function in the Philosophy of Duns Scotus, St Bonaventure, NY, Franciscan Institute, 1946. (A study still regarded as the best introduction to Scotus’s metaphysics.) Univocity 13.58 Boulnois, O. Jean Duns Scot: Sur la connaissance de Dieu et l’univocié de l’étant, Paris, Presses Universitaires de France, 1988. 13.59 Dumont, S.D. ‘The univocity of being in the fourteenth century’, Mediaeval Studies 49 (1987): 1–75; 50 (1988): 186–256; (with S. Brown) 51 (1989): 1–129. 13.60 ——‘Transcendental being: Scotus and Scotists’, Topoi 11 (1992): 135–48. 13.61 Marrone, S.P. ‘The notion of univocity in Duns Scotus’s early works’, Franciscan Studies 43 (1983): 347–95. Individuation 13.62 Dumont, S.D. ‘The question on individuation in Scotus’s Quaestiones in Metaphysicam’, in [13.49] I, 193–227. 13.63 King, P. ‘Duns Scotus on the common nature and the individual difference’, Philosophical Topics 20, 2 (1992): 51–76. 13.64 Rudavsky, T. ‘The doctrine of individuation in Duns Scotus’, Franziskanische Studien 59 (1977): 320–77 and 62 (1980): 62–83. 13.65 Wolter, A.B. ‘Scotus’s individuation theory’, in [13.54] 98–124. Formal distinction 13.66 Adams, M.M. ‘Universals in the fourteenth century’, in CHLMP pp. 411–39. 13.67 Wolter, A.B. ‘The formal distinction’, in [13.54] 45–60. Epistemology 13.68 Dumont, S.D. ‘The scientific character of theology and the origin of Duns Scotus’s distinction between intuitive and abstractive cognition’, Speculum 64 (1989): 579–99. 13.69 Marenbon, J. Later Medieval Philosophy (1150–1350), London, Routledge, 1987, pp. 154–68. 13.70 Wolter, A.B. ‘Duns Scotus on intuition, memory and our knowledge of individuals’, in [13.54] 98–124. Virtues, will and freedom 13.71 Boler, J. ‘Transcending the natural: Duns Scotus on the two affections of the will’, American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 67 (1993): 109–22. 13.72 Dumont, S.D. ‘The necessary connection of prudence to the moral virtues according to John Duns Scotus—revisited’, Recherches de théologie ancienne et médiévale 55 (1988): 184–206. 13.73 ——‘The origin of Scotus’s theory of synchronic contingency’, The Modern Schoolman (1995): 149–68. 13.74 Frank, W.A. ‘Duns Scotus on autonomous freedom and divine co-causality’, Medieval Philosophy and Theology 2 (1992): 142–64. 13.75 Ingham, M.E. Ethics and Freedom: an Historical-Critical Investigation of Scotist Ethical Thought, Washington, DC, University Press of America, 1989. 13.76 Prentice, R. ‘The voluntarism of Duns Scotus as seen in his comparison of the intellect and the will’, Franciscan Studies 28 (1968): 63–103. 13.77 Wolter, A.B. ‘Native freedom of the will as the key to the ethics of Scotus’, in [13.54] 148–62. 13.78 ——‘Duns Scotus on the will as rational potency’, in [13.54] 163–80.

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  • Duns Scotus, John — See Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus, see Intellectual context (The) of later medieval philosophy: universities, Aristotle, arts, theology …   History of philosophy

  • Henry of Ghent — See Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus, see Intellectual context (The) of later medieval philosophy: universities, Aristotle, arts, theology …   History of philosophy

  • Henry of Ghent — (c. 1217 – 1293), scholastic philosopher, known as Doctor Solemnis (the Solemn Doctor), also known as Henricus de Gandavo and Henricus Gandavensis, was born in the district of Mude, near Ghent, and died at Tournai (or Paris). Between the death of …   Wikipedia

  • Henry of Ghent — • A notable scholastic philosopher and theologian of the thirteenth century Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Henry of Ghent     Henry of Ghent      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Duns Scotus — John Duns Scotus John Duns Scotus Full name John Duns Scotus Born c. 1265 Duns, Berwickshire, Scotland Died 8 November 1308 Cologne, Germany …   Wikipedia

  • Henry of Ghent — ▪ French philosopher French  Henri de Gand,  byname  Doctor Solemnis (“Exalted Teacher”)   born c. 1217, , Ghent, Flanders [now in Belgium] died June 29, 1293, Tournai       Scholastic philosopher and theologian, one of the most illustrious… …   Universalium

  • Blessed John Duns Scotus —     Bl. John Duns Scotus     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Bl. John Duns Scotus     Surnamed DOCTOR SUBTILIS, died 8 November, 1308; he was the founder and leader of the famous Scotist School, which had its chief representatives among the Franciscans …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Walter Burley, Peter Aureoli and Gregory of Rimini — Stephen Brown THE END OF THE GREAT ERA Immediately after the glorious age of Bonaventure and Thomas Aquinas, the University of Paris, as we have seen, had a number of outstanding teachers. Henry of Ghent, following in the path of Bonaventure, was …   History of philosophy

  • Scotism and Scotists — • Article on the school of philosophy inspired by John Duns Scotus, and its proponents in the fourteenth through nineteenth centuries Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Scotism and Scotists     Scotism and Scotists …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Das Seiende — Der Begriff Sein (griech. von to einai, lat. esse Infinitiv) bedeutet in der Philosophie Dasein, Gegebensein, In der Welt sein, etwas Allgemeines, allem Zugrundeliegendes, aber auch das alles umfassende Höchste (Gott). Im Gegensatz dazu… …   Deutsch Wikipedia


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