1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Scholasticism
SCHOLASTICISM, the name usually employed to denote the most typical products of medieval thought. After the centuries of intellectual darkness which followed upon the closing of the philosophical schools in Athens (529), and the death of Boetius, the last of the ancient philosophers, the first symptoms of renewed intellectual activity appear contemporaneously with the consolidation of the empire of the West in the hands of Charlemagne. He endeavoured to attract to his court the best scholars of Britain and Ireland, and by imperial decree (787) commanded the establishment of schools in connexion with every abbey in his realms. Peter of Pisa and Alcuin of York were his advisers, and under their care the opposition long supposed to exist between godliness and secular learning speedily disappeared. Besides the celebrated school of the Palace, where Alcuin had among his hearers the members of the imperial family and the dignitaries of the empire as well as talented youths of humbler origin, we hear of the episcopal schools of Lyons, Orleans and St Denis, the cloister schools of St Martin of Tours, of Fulda, Corbie, Fontenelle and many others, besides the older monasteries of St Gall and Reichenau. These schools became the centres of medieval learning and speculation, and from them the name Scholasticism is derived (cf. Sandys, Hist. of Class. Schol., i. 471, 1906). They were designed to communicate instruction in the seven liberal arts which constituted the educational curriculum of the middle ages (see Trivium). The name doctor scholasticus was applied originally to any teacher in such an ecclesiastical gymnasium, but gradually the study of dialectic or logic overshadowed the more elementary disciplines, and the general acceptation of " doctor " came to be one who occupied himself with the teaching of logic. The philosophy of the later Scholastics is more extended in its scope; but to the end of the medieval period philosophy centres in the discussion of the same logical problems which began to agitate the teachers of the 9th and 1 oth centuries.
Scholasticism in the widest sense thus extends from the 9th to the end of the 14th or the beginning of the 15th century - from Erigena to Occam and his followers. The belated ScholasticsChronological limits. who lingered beyond the last mentioned date served only as marks for the obloquy heaped upon the schools by the men of the new time. Erigena is really of the spiritual kindred of the Neoplatonists and Christian mystics rather than of the typical Scholastic doctors, and, in fact, the activity of Scholasticism is mainly confined within the limits of the 11th and the 14th centuries. It is divisible into two well-marked periods - the first extending to the end of the 12th century and embracing as its chief names Roscellinus, Anselm, William of Champeaux and Abelard, while the second extended from the beginning of the 13th century to the Renaissance and the general distraction of men's thoughts from the problems and methods of Scholasticism. In this second period the names of Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus represent (in the 13th century and the first years of the 14th century) the culmination of Scholastic thought and its consolidation into system.
Prantl says that there is no such thing as philosophy in the middle ages; there are only logic and theology. The remark overlooks two factsLogic and theology. - firstly that the main objects of theology and philosophy are identical, though the td°f ogyod method of treatment is different, and secondly that logical discussion commonly leads up to metaphysical problems, and that this was pre-eminently the case with the logic of the Schoolmen. But the saying draws attention to the two great influences which shaped medieval thought - the tradition of ancient logic and the system of Christian theology. Scholasticism opens with a discussion of certain points in the Aristotelian logic; it speedily begins to apply its logical distinctions to the doctrines of the church; and when it attains its full stature in St Thomas it has, with the exception of certain mysteries, rationalized or Aristotelianized the whole churchly system. Or we might say with equal truth that the philosophy of St Thomas is Aristotle Christianized. The Schoolmen contemplate the universe of nature and man not with their own eyes but in the glass of Aristotelian formulae. Their chief works are in the shape of commentaries upon the writings of "the philosopher." Their problems and solutions alike spring from the master's dicta - from the need of reconciling these with one another and with the conclusions of Christian theology.
The fact that the channels of thought during the middle ages were determined in this way is usually expressed by saying that reason in the middle age is subject to authorityReason and authority.. It has not the free play which characterizes its activity in Greece and in the philosophy of modern times. Its conclusions are predetermined, and the initiative of the individual thinker is almost confined, therefore, to formal details in the treatment of his thesis. To the church, reason is the handmaid of faith (ancilla fidei). But this principle of the subordination of the reason wears a different aspect according to the century and writer referred to. In Scotus Erigena, at the beginning of the Scholastic era, there is no such subordination contemplated, because philosophy and theology in his work are in implicit unity. " Conficitur inde veram esse philosophiam veram religionem, conversimque veram religionem esse veram philosophiam " (De divina praedestinatione, Proem). Reason in its own strength and with its own instruments evolves a system of the universe which coincides, according to Erigena, with the teaching of Scripture. For Erigena, therefore, the speculative reason is the supreme arbiter; and in accordance with its results the utterances of Scripture and of the church have not infrequently to be subjected to an allegorical or mystical interpretation. But this is only to say again that Erigena is more of a Neoplatonist than a Scholastic. Hence Cousin suggested in respect of this point a threefold chronological division - at the outset the absolute subordination of philosophy to theology, then the period of their alliance, and finally the beginning of their separation. In other words, we note philosophy gradually extending its claims. Dialectic is, to begin with, a merely secular art, and only by degrees are its terms and distinctions applied to the subject-matter of theology. The early results of the application, in the hands of Berengarius and Roscellinus, did not seem favourable to Christian orthodoxy. Hence the strength with which a champion of the faith like Anselm insists on the subordination of reason. To Bernard of Clairvaux and many other churchmen the application of dialectic to the things of faith appears as dangerous as it is impious. Later, in the systems of the great Schoolmen, the rights of reason are fully established and acknowledged. The relation of reason and faith remains external, and certain doctrines - an increasing number as times goes on - are withdrawn from the sphere of reason. But with these exceptions the two march side by side; they establish by different means the same results. For the conflicts which accompanied the first intrusion of philosophy into the theological domain more profound and cautious thinkers with a far ampler apparatus of knowledge had substituted a harmony. " The constant effort of Scholasticism to be at once philosophy and theology " seemed at last satisfactorily realized. But the further progress of Scholastic thought consisted in a withdrawal of doctrine after doctrine from the possibility of rational proof and their relegation to the sphere of faith. Indeed, no sooner was the harmony apparently established by Aquinas than Duns Scotus began this negative criticism, which is carried much farther by William of Occam. But this is equivalent to a confession that Scholasticism had failed in its task, which was to rationalize the doctrines of the church. The Aristotelian form refused to fit a matter for which it was never intended; the matter of Christian theology refused to be forced into an alien form. The end of the period was thus brought about by the internal decay of its method and principles quite as much as by the variety of external causes which contributed to transfer men's interests to other subjects.
But, although the relation of reason to an external authority thus constitutes the badge of medieval thought, it would be unjustScholasticism not unprogressive. to look upon Scholasticism as philosophically barren, and to speak as if reason, after an interregnum of a thousand years, resumed its rights at the Renaissance. Such language was excusable in the men of the Renaissance, fighting the battle of classic form and beauty and of the manysidedness of life against the barbarous terminology and the monastic ideals of the schools, or in the protagonists of modern science. The new is never just to the old. In the schools and universities of the middle age the intellect of the semi-barbarous European peoples had been trained for the work of the modern world. But we may go further and say that, in spite of their initial acceptance of authority, the Scholastics are not the antagonists of reason; on the contrary they fight its battles. The attempt to establish by argument the authority of faith is in reality the unconscious establishment of the authority of reason. Reason, if admitted at all, must ultimately claim the whole man. Anselm's motto, Credo ut intelligam, marks well the distance that has been traversed since Tertullian's Credo quia absurdum est. The claim of reason has been recognized to manipulate the data of faith, at first blindly and immediately received, and to weld them into a system such as will satisfy its own needs. Scholasticism that has outlived its day may be justly identified with obscurantism, but not so the systems of those who, by their intellectual force alone, once held all the minds of Europe in subjection. The scholastic systems are not the free products of speculation; in the main they are summae theologiae, or they are modified versions of Aristotle. But each system is a fresh recognition of the rights of reason, and Scholasticism as a whole may be regarded as the history of the growth and gradual emancipation of reason which was completed in the movements of the Renaissance and the Reformation.
In speaking of the origin of Scholasticism - name and thing - it has been already noted that medieval speculation takes its rise in certain logical problems. To be more precise,"Universals." it is the nature of " universals " which forms the central theme of Scholastic debate (see Nominalism, Realism). This is the case almost exclusively during the first period, and only to a less extent during the second, where it reappears in a somewhat different form as the difficulty concerning the principle of individuation. The controversy was between Nominalists and Realists; and, exclusively logical as the point may at first sight seem to be, adherence to one side or the other is an accurate indication of philosophic tendency. The two opposing theories express at bottom, in the phraseology of their own time, the radical divergence of pantheism and individualism - the two extremes between which philosophy seems pendulum-wise to oscillate, and which may be said still to await their perfect reconciliation. First, however, we must examine the form 'which this question assumed to the first medieval thinkers, and the source from which they derived it. A single sentence in Porphyry's IsagogePorphyry's "Isagoge" or " introduction " to the Categories of Aristotle furnished the i o ,s text of the discussion. The treatise of Porphyry deals with the notions of genus, species, difference, property and accident (see Predicables); and he mentions, but declines to discuss, the various theories that have been held as to the ontological import of genera and species. In the Latin translation of Boetius, in which alone the Isagoge was then known, the sentence runs as follows:--
" Mox de generibus et speciebus illud quidem sive subsistant, sive in solis nudis intellectibus posita sint, sive subsistentia corporalia sint an incorporalia, et utrum separata a sensibilibus an in sensibilibus posita et circa haec consistentia, dicere recusabo; altissimum enim negotium est hujusmodi et majoris egens inquisitionis."
To form a proper estimate of the first stage of Scholastic discussion it is requisite above all things to have a clear idea of the appliances then at the disposal of the writersExtent of the early Schoolmen's knowledge.. What was the extent of their knowledge of ancient philosophy? To begin with, we know that till the 13th century the middle age was ignorant of Greek, and possessed no philosophical works in their Greek original(see Classics). In translations they had only the Categories and the De interpretatione of Aristotle in the versions of Boetius, the Timaeus of Plato in the version of Chalcidius, and Boetius's translation of Porphyry's Isagoge. Some general information as to the Platonic doctrines (chiefly in a Neoplatonic garb) was obtainable from the commentary with which Chalcidius (6th century) accompanied his translation, from the work of Apuleius (2nd century) De dogmate Platonis, and indirectly from the commentary of Macrobius (c. 400) on the Somnium Scipionis of Cicero, and from the writings of St Augustine. As aids to the study of logic, the doctors of this period, beside the commentaries and treatises of Boetius (q.v.), possessed two tracts attributed to St Augustine, the first of which, Principia dialecticae, is probably his, but is mainly grammatical in its import. The other tract, known as Categoriae decem, and taken at first for a translation of Aristotle's treatise, is really a rapid summary of it, and certainly does not belong to Augustine. To this list must be added: (I) the Satyricon of Martianus Capella, the greater part of which is a treatise on the seven liberal arts, the fourth book dealing with logic; (2) the De artibus ac disciplinis liberalium literarum of Cassiodorus; (3) the Origines of Isidore of Seville (ob. 636), which is little more than a reproduction of (2). The above constitutes the whole material which the earlier middle age had at its disposal.
The grandly conceived system of Erigena (see Erigena and Mysticism) stands by itself in the 9th century like the product of another age.Erigena. John the Scot was still acquainted with Greek, seeing that he translated the work of the pseudo-Dionysius; and his speculative genius achieved the fusion of Christian doctrine and Neoplatonic thought in a system of quite remarkable metaphysical completeness. It is the only complete and independent system between the decline of ancient thought and the system of Aquinas in the 13th century, if indeed we ought not to go further, to modern times, to find a parallel. Erigena pronounces no express opinion upon the question which was even then beginning to occupy men's minds; but his Platonico-Christian theory of the Eternal Word as containing in Himself the exemplars of created things is equivalent to the assertion of universalia His whole system, indeed, is based upon the idea of the divine as the exclusively real, of which the world of individual existence is but the theophany; the special and the individual are immanent, therefore, in the general. And hence at a much later date (in the beginning of the 13th century) his name was invoked to cover the pantheistic heresies of Amalrich of Bena.
Erigena does not separate his Platonic theory of pre-existent exemplars from the Aristotelian doctrine of the universal as in the individuals. As Ueberweg points out, his theory is rather a result of the transference of the Aristotelian conception of substance to the Platonic Idea, and of an identification of the relation of accidents to the substance in which they inhere with that of the individuals to the Idea of which, in the Platonic doctrine, they are copies (Hist. of Philosophy, i. 363, Eng. trans.). Hence it may be said that the universals are in the individuals, constituting their essential reality (and it is an express part of Erigena's system that the created but creative Word, the second division of Nature, should pass into the third stage of created and non-creating things); or rather, perhaps, we ought to say that the individuals exist in the bosom of their universal. At all events, while Erigena's Realism is pronounced, the Platonic and Aristotelian forms of the doctrine are not distinguished in his writings. Prantl has professed to find the headstream of Nominalism also in Scotus Erigena; but beyond the fact that he discusses at considerable length the categories of thought and their mutual relations, occasionally using the term voces to express his meaning, Prantl appears to adduce no reasons for an assertion which directly contradicts Erigena's most fundamental doctrines. Moreover, Erigena again and again declares that dialectic has to do with the stadia of a real or divine classification: " Intelligitur quod ars ilia, quae dividit genera in species et species in genera resolvit, quae X dicitur, non ab humanis machinationibus sit facta, sed in natura rerum ab auctore omnium artium, quae verae artes sunt, condita et a sapientibus inventa " (De divisione naturae, iv. 4).
The immediate influence of Erigena's system cannot have been great, and his works seem soon to have dropped out of notice in the centuries that followed. The real germs of Realism and Nominalism are to be found in the 9th century, in scattered commentaries and glosses upon the statements of Porphyry and Boetius. Boetius in commenting upon Porphyry had already started the discussion as to the nature of universals. He is definitely anti-Platonic, and his language sometimesInfluence of Boetius. takes even a nominalistic tone, as when he declares that the species is nothing more than a thought or conception gathered from the substantial similarity of a number of dissimilar individuals. The expression " substantial similarity " is still, however, sufficiently vague to cover a multitude of views. He concludes that the genera and species exist as universals only in thought; but, inasmuch as they are collected from singulars on account of a real resemblance, they have a certain existence independently of the mind, but not an existence disjoined from the singulars of sense. " Subsistunt ergo circa sensibilia, intelliguntur autem praeter corpora." Or, according to the phrase which recurs so often during the middle ages, " universale intelligitur, singulare sentitur." Boetius ends by declining to adjudicate between Plato and Aristotle, remarking in a semi-apologetic style that, if he has expounded Aristotle's opinion by preference, his course is justified by the fact that he is commenting upon an introduction to Aristotle. And, indeed, his discussion cannot claim to be more than semi-popular in character. The point in dispute has not in his hands the all-absorbing importance it afterwards attained, and the keenness of later distinctions is as yet unknown. In this way, however, though the distinctions drawn may still be comparatively vague, there existed in the schools a Peripatetic tradition to set over against the Neoplatonic influence of John the Scot, and amongst the earliest remains of Scholastic thought we find this tradition asserting itself somewhat vigorously. There were Nominalists before Roscellinus among these early thinkers.
Alcuin (q.v.) does nothing more in his Dialectic than abridge Boetius and the other commentators. But in the school of Fulda, presided over by his pupil Hrabanus MaurusHrabanus Maurus. (776-856), there are to be found some fresh contributions to the discussion. The collected works of Hrabanus himself contain nothing new, but in some glosses on Aristotle and Porphyry, first exhumed by Cousin, there are several noteworthy expressions of opinion in a Nominalistic sense. The author interprets Boetius's meaning to be " Quod eadem res individuum et species et genus est, et non esse universalia individuis quasi quoddam diversum." He also cites, apparently with approval, the view of those who held Porphyry's treatise to be not de quinque rebus, but de quinque vocibus. A genus, they said, is essentially something which is predicated of a subject; but a thing cannot be a predicate (res enim non praedicatur). These glosses, it should be added, however, have been attributed by Prantl and Kaulich, on the ground of divergence from doctrines contained in the published works of Hrabanus, to some disciple of his rather than to Hrabanus himself. Fulda had become through the teaching of the latter an intellectual centre. Eric or Heiricus, who studied there under Haimon, the successor of Hrabanus, and afterwardsEric. taught at Auxerre, wrote glosses on the margin of his copy of the pseudo-Augustinian Categoriae, which have been published by Cousin and Haureau. He there says in words which recall the language of Locke (Essay, iii. 3) that because proper names are innumerable, and no intellect or memory would suffice for the knowing of them, they are all as it were comprehended in the species. Taken strictly his words state the position of extreme Nominalism; but even if we were not forbidden to do so by other passages, in which the doctrine of moderate Realism is adopted (under cover of the current distinction between the singular as felt and the pure universal as understood), it would still be unfair to press any passage in the writings of this period. As Cousin says, " Realism and Nominalism were undoubtedly there in germ, but their true principles with their necessary consequences remained profoundly unknown; their connexion with all the great questions of religion and politics was not even suspected. The two systems were nothing more as yet than two different ways of interpreting a phrase of Porphyry, and they remained unnoticed Âin the obscurity of the schools.. .. It was the 11th century which gave Nominalism to the world."
Remigius of Auxerre, pupil of Eric, became the most celebrated professor of dialectic in the Parisian schools of the 10th century. As he reverted to RealismRemigius., his influence, first at Rheims and then in Paris, was doubtless instrumental in bringing about the general acceptance of that doctrine till the advent of Roscellinus as a powerful disturbing influence. " There is one genus more general than the rest," says Remi (J. B. Haureau, Histoire de la philosophie scolastique, i. 146), "beyond which the intellect cannot rise, called by the Greeks obvia, by the Latins essentia. The essence, indeed, comprehends all natures, and everything that exists is a portion of this essence, by participation in which everything that is hath its existence." And similarly with the intermediate genera. "Homo est multorum hominum substantialis unitas." Remigius is thus a Realist, not so much in the sense of Plato as in the spirit of Parmenides, and Haureau applies to this form of Realism Bayle's description of Realism in general as " le Spinosisme non developpe." The 10th century as a whole is especially marked out as a dark age, being partly filled with civil troubles and partly characterized by a reaction of faith against reason. In the monastery of St Gall there was considerable logical activity, but nothing of philosophical interest is recorded. The chief name of the centuryGerbert. is that of Gerbert (died as Pope Silvester II. in 1003). His treatise De rationali et ratione uti is more interesting as a display of the logical acquirements of the age than as possessing any direct philosophical bearing. The school of Chartres, founded in 990 by FulbertSchool of Chartres., one of Gerbert's pupils, was distinguished for nearly two centuries not so much for its dialectics S' and philosophy as for its humanistic culture. The account which John of Salisbury gives of it in the first half of the r 2th century, under the presidency of Theodoric and Bernard, affords a very pleasant glimpse into the history of the middle ages. Since then, says their regretful pupil, " less time and less care have been bestowed on grammar, and persons who profess all arts, liberal and mechanical, are ignorant of the primary art, without which a man proceeds in vain to the rest. For albeit the other studies assist literature, yet this has the sole privilege of making one lettered."
Hitherto, if dialectical studies had been sometimes viewed askance by the stricter churchmen, it was not because logicApplication of logic to theology. had dared to stretch forth its hands towards the ark of God, but simply on the ground of the old opposition between the church and the world. But now bolder spirits arose who did not shrink from applying the distinctions of their human wisdom to the mysteries of theology. It was the excitement caused by their attempt, and the heterodox conclusions which were its first result, that lifted these Scholastic disputations into the central position which they henceforth occupied in the life of the middle ages. The next centuries show that peculiar combination of logic and theology which is the mark of Scholasticism, especially in the period before the 13th century.
One of the first of these attacks was made by Berengarius of Tours (999-1088) upon the doctrine of transubstantiation; he deniedBerengarius. the possibility of a change of substance in the bread and wine without some corresponding change in the accidents. M de Remusat characterizes his view on the Eucharist as a specific application of Nominalism. More intimately connected with the progress of philosophical thought was the tritheistic view of the Trinity propounded by Roscellinus as one of the results of his Nominalistic theory of knowing and being.Roscellinus. The sharpness and onesidedness linos. with which he formulated his position were the im mediate occasion of the contemporaneous crystallization of Realism in the theories of Anselm and William of Champeaux. Henceforth discussion is carried on with a full consciousness of the differences involved and the issues at stake; and, thanks to the heretical conclusion disclosed by Roscellinus, Realism became established for several centuries as the orthodox philosophical creed. Roscellinus (d. c. 1125) was looked upon by later times as the originator of the sententia vocum, that is to say, of Nominalism proper. From the scanty and ill-natured notices of his opponents (Anselm and Abelard), we gather that he refused to recognize the reality of anything but the individual; he treated " the universal substance," says Anselm, as no more than "flatum vocis," a verbal breathing or sound; and in a similar strain he denied any reality to the parts of which a whole, such as a house, is commonly said to be composed. The parts in the one case, the general name or common attributes in the other, are only, he seems to have argued, so many subjective points of view from which we choose to regard that which in its own essence is one and indivisible, existing in its own right apart from any connexion with other individuals. This pure individualism, consistently interpreted, involves the denial of all real relation whatsoever; for things are related and classified by means of their general characteristics. Accordingly, if these general characteristics do not possess reality, things are reduced to a number of characterless and mutually indifferent points. It is possible, as Haureau maintains, that Roscellinus meant no more than to refute the extreme Realism which asserts the substantial and, above all, the independent existence of the universals. Some of the expressions used by Anselm in controverting his position favour this idea. He upbraids Roscellinus, for example, because he was unable to conceive whiteness apart from its existence in something white. But this is precisely an instance of the hypostatization of abstractions in exposing which the chief strength and value of Nominalism lie. Cousin is correct in pointing out, from the Realistic point of view, that it is one thing to deny the hypostatization of an accident like colour or wisdom, and another thing to deny the foundation in reality of those " true and legitimate universals " which we understand by the terms genera and species. It is not to be supposed that the full scope of his doctrine was present to the mind of Roscellinus; but Nominalism would hardly have made the sensation it did had its assertions been as innocent as Haureau would make them. Like most innovators, Roscellinus stated his position in bold language, which emphasized his opposition to accepted doctrines; and his words, if not his intentions, involved the extreme Nominalism which, by making universality merely subjective, pulverizes existence into detached particulars. And, though we may acquit Roscellinus of consciously propounding a theory so subversive of all knowledge, his criticism of the doctrine of the Trinity is proof at least of the determination with which he was prepared to carry out his individualism. If we are not prepared to say that the three Persons are one thing - in which case the Father and the Holy Ghost must have been incarnate along with the Son - then, did usage permit, he says, we ought to speak of three Gods.
This theological deduction from his doctrine drew upon Roscellinus the polemic of his most celebrated opponent, Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109). Roscellinus appears at first to have imaginedAnselm. that his tritheistic theory had the sanction of Lanfranc and Anselm, and the latter was led in consequence to compose his treatise De fide Trinitatis. From this may be gathered his views on the nature of universals. " How shall he who has not arrived at understanding how several men are in species one man comprehend how in that most mysterious nature several persons, each of which is perfect God, are one God? " The manner in which humanity exists in the individual was soon to be the subject of keen discussion, and to bring to light diverging views within the Realistic camp; but St Anselm does not go into detail on this point, and seems to imply that it is not surrounded by special difficulties. In truth, his Realism was of a somewhat uncritical type. It was simply accepted by him in a broad way as the orthodox philosophic doctrine, and the doctrine which, as a sagacious churchman, he perceived to be most in harmony with Christian theology. Anselm's natural element was theology, and the high metaphysical questions which are as it were the obverse of theology. On the other hand, as the first to formulate the ontological argument (in his Proslogion) for the existence of God, he joins hands with some of the profoundest names in modern philosophy. To Anselm specially belongs the motto Credo ut intelligam, or, as it is
otherwise expressed in the sub-title of his Proslogion, Fides quaerens intellectum. He endeavoured to give a philosophical demonstration not only of the existence of God but also of the Trinity and the Incarnation, which were placed by the later Scholastics among the " mysteries." The Christological theory of satisfaction expounded in the Cur Deus Homo falls beyond the scope of the present article. But the Platonically conceived proof of the being of God contained in the Monologion shows that Anselm's doctrine of the universals as substances in things (universalia in re) was closely connected in his mind with the thought of the universalia ante rem, the exemplars of perfect goodness and truth and justice, by participation in which all earthly things are judged to possess these qualities. In this way he rises like Plato to the absolute Goodness, Justice and Truth, and then proceeds in Neoplatonic fashion to a deduction of the Trinity as involved in the idea of the divine Word (see further Anselm).
Besides its connexion with the speculations of Anselm, the doctrine of Roscellinus was also of decisive influence within the schools in crystallizingWilliam of Champeaux. the opposite opinion. William of Champeaux (1070-1121), who is reputed the founder of a definitely formulated Realism, much Y as Roscellinus is regarded as the founder of Nominalism, was instructed by Roscellinus himself in dialectic. Unfortunately none of William's philosophical works have survived, and we depend upon the statements of his opponent Abelard, in the Historia calamitatum mearum, and in certain manuscripts discovered by Cousin. From these sources it appears that he professed successively two opinions on the nature of the universals, having been dislodged from his first position by the criticism of Abelard, his quondam pupil. There is no obscurity about William's first position. It is a Realism of the most uncompromising type, which by its reduction of individuals to accidents of one identical substance seems to tremble on the very verge of Spinozism. He taught, says Abelard, that the same thing or substance was present in its entirety and essence in each individual, and that individuals differed no whit in their essence but only in the variety of their accidents. Thus "Socratitus" is merely an accident of the substance "humanitas," or, as it is put by the author of the treatise De generibus et speciebus," Man is a species, a thing essentially one (res una essentialiter), which receives certain forms which make it Socrates. This thing, remaining essentially the same, receives in the same way other forms which constitute Plato and the other individuals of the species man; and, with the exception of those forms which mould that matter into the individual Socrates, there is nothing in Socrates that is not the same at the same time under the forms of Plato. ... According to these men, even though rationality did not exist in any individual, its existence in nature would still remain intact " (Cousin, Introduction, &c., p. cxx.). Criticism was speedily at work upon William of Champeaux's position. He had said expressly that the universal essence, by the addition of the individual forms, was individualized and present secundum totam swam quantitatem in each individual. But if homo is wholly and essentially present in Socrates, then it is, as it were, absorbed in Socrates; where Socrates is not, it cannot be, consequently not in Plato and the other individua hominis. This was called the argument of the homo Socraticus; and it appears to have been with the view of obviating such time and space difficulties, emphasized in the criticism of Abelard, that William latterly modified his form of expression. But his second position is enveloped in considerable obscurity. Abelard says, "Sic autem correxit sententiam, ut deinceps rem eamdem non essentialiter sed individualiter diceret." In other words, he merely sought to avoid the awkward consequences of his own doctrine by substituting "individualiter" for "essentialiter" in his definition. If we are to put a sense upon this new expression, William may probably have meant to recall any words of his which seemed, by locating the universal in the entirety of its essence in each individual to confer upon the individual an independence which did not belong to it - thus leading in the end to the demand for a separate universal for each individual. In opposition to this Nominalistic view, which implied the reversal of his whole position, William may have meant to say that, instead of the universal being multiplied, it is rather the individuals which are reduced to unity in the universal. The species is essentially one, but it takes on individual varieties or accidents. If, however, we are more ill-natured, we may regard the phrase, with Prantl, as simply a meaningless makeshift in extremities; and if so, Abelard's account of the subsequent decline of William's reputation would be explained. But there is in some of the manuscripts the various reading of " indifferenter " for " individualiter," and this is accepted as giving the true sense of the passage by Cousin and Remusat (Haureau and Prantl taking, on different grounds, the opposite view). According to this reading, William sought to rectify his position by asserting, not the numerical identity of the universal in each individual, but rather its sameness in the sense of indistinguishable similarity. Ueberweg cites a passage from his theological works which apparently bears out this view, for William there expressly distinguishes the two senses of the word " same." Peter and Paul, he says, are the same in so far as they are both men, although the humanity of each is, strictly speaking, not identical but similar. In the Persons of the Trinity, on the other hand the relation is one of absolute identity.
Whether this view is to be traced to William or not, it is certain that the theory of " indifference " or " non-difference " (indifferentia) was a favourite solution in the Realistic schools soon after his time.Theory of indifference. The inherent difficulties of Realism led to a J variety of attempts to reach a more satisfactory formula. ohn of Salisbury, in his account of the controversies of these days (Metalogicus, ii. 17) reckons up nine different views which were held on the question of the universals, and the list is extended by Prantl (ii. 118) to thirteen. In this list are included of course all shades of opinion, from extreme Nominalism to extreme Realism. The doctrine of indifference as it appears in later writers certainly tends, as Prantl points out, towards Nominalism, inasmuch as it gives up the substantiality of the universals. The universal consists of the non-different elements or attributes in the separate individuals, which alone exist substantially. If we restrict attention to these non-different elements, the individual becomes for us the species, the genus, &c.; everything depends on the point of view from which we regard it. "Nihil omnino est praeter individuum, sed et illud aliter et aliter attentum species et genus et generalissimum est." Adelard of Bath (whose treatise De eodem et diverso must have been written between 1105 and 1117) was probably the author or at all events the elaborator of this doctrine, and he sought by its means to effect a reconciliation between Plato and Aristotle: - " Since that which we see is at once genus and species and individual, Aristotle rightly insisted that the universals do not exist except in the things of sense. But, since those universals, so far as they are called genera and species, cannot be perceived by any one in their purity without the admixture of imagination, Plato maintained that they existed and could be beheld beyond the things of sense, to wit, in the divine mind. Thus these men, although in words they seem opposed, yet held in reality the same opinion." Prantl distinguishes from the system of indifference the " status " doctrine attributed by John of Salisbury to Walter of Mortagne (d. 1174), according to which the universal is essentially united to the individual, which may be looked upon, e.g. as Plato, man, animal, &c., according to the " status " or point of view which we assume. But this seems only a different expression for the same position, and the same may doubtless be said of the theory which employed the outlandish word " maneries " (Fr. maniere) to signify that genera and species represented the different ways in which individuals might be regarded. The concessions to Nominalism which such views embody make them representative of what Haureau calls " the Peripatetic section of the Realistic school."
Somewhat apart from current controversies stood the teaching of the school of Chartres, humanistically nourished on the study of the ancients, and important as a revival of PlatonismSchool of Chartres. in opposition to the formalism of the Aristotelians. Bernard of Chartres, at the beginning of the 12th century, endeavoured, according to John of Salisbury, to reconcile Plato and Aristotle; but his doctrine is almost wholly derived from the former through St Augustine and the commentary of Chalcidius. The universalia in re have little place in his thoughts, which are directed by preference to the eternal exemplars as they exist in the supersensible world of the divine thought. His Megacosmus and Microcosmus are little more than a poetic gloss upon the Timaeus. William of Conches, a pupil of Bernard's, devoting himself to psychological and physiological questions, was of less importance for the specific logico-metaphysical problem. But Gilbert de la Porree, according to Haureau, is the most eminent logician of the Realistic
school in the 12th century and the most profound metaphysician of either school. The views which he expressed in his commentary on the pseudo-Boetian treatise, De Trinitate, are certainly much more important than the mediatizing systems already referred to. The most interesting part of the work is the distinction which Gilbert draws between the manner of existence of genera and species and of substances proper. He distinguishes between the quod est and the quo est. Genera and species certainly exist, but they do not exist in their own right as substances. What exists as a substance and the basis of qualities or forms (quod est) may be said substare; the forms on the other hand by which such an individual substance exists qualitatively (quo est) subsistent, though it cannot be said that they substant. The intellect collects the universal, which exists but not as a substance (est sed non substat), from the particular things which not merely are (sunt) but also, as subjects of accidents, have substantial existence (substant), by considering only their substantial similarity or conformity. The universals are thus forms inherent in things - " native forms," according to the expression by which Gilbert's doctrine is concisely known. The individual consists of an assemblage of such forms; and it is individual because nowhere else is exactly such an assemblage to be met with. The form exists concretely in the individual things (sensibilis in re sensibili), for in sensible things form and matter are always united. But they may be conceived abstractly or non-sensuously by the mind (sed mente concipitur insensibilis), and they then refer themselves as copies to the Ideas their divine exemplars. In God, who is pure form without matter, the archetypes of material things exist as eternal immaterial forms. In this way Gilbert was at once Aristotelian and Platonist. The distinctions made by him above amount to a formal criticism of categories, and in the same spirit he teaches that no one of the categories can be applied in its literal sense to God (see further Gilbert De La Porrée).
But the outstanding figure in the controversies of the first half of the 12th century is Abelard. There is considerable. difference of opinionAbelard. as to his system, some, like Ritter and Erdmann, regarding it as a moderate form of Realism - a return indeed to the position of Aristotle - while others, like Cousin, Remusat, Haureau and Ueberweg, consider it to be essentially Nominalistic, only more prudently and perhaps less consistently expressed than was the case with Roscellinus. His position is ordinarily designated by the name Conceptualism (q.v.), though there is very little talk of concepts in Abelard's own writings. There can be no doubt, at all events, that Abelard himself intended to find a compromise. As against Realism he maintains consistently Res de re non praedicatur; genera and species, therefore, which are predicated of the individual subject, cannot be treated as things or substances. This is manifestly true, however real the facts may be which are designated by the generic and specific names; and the position is fully accepted, as has been seen, by a Realist like Gilbert, who perhaps adopted it first from Abelard. Abelard also perceived that Realism, by separating the universal substance from the forms which individualize it, makes the universal indifferent to these forms, and leads directly to the doctrine of the identity of all beings in one universal substance or matter - a pantheism which might take either an Averroistic or a Spinozistic form. Against the system of non-difference Abelard has a number of logical and traditional arguments to bring, but it is sufficiently condemned by his fundamental doctrine that only the individual exists in its own right. For that system still seems to recognize a generic substance as the core of the individual, whereas, according to Cousin's rendering of Abelard's doctrine, "only individuals exist, and in the individual nothing but the individual." Holding fast then on the one hand to the individual as the only true substance, and on the other to the traditional definition of the genus as that which is predicated of a number of individuals (quod praedicatur de pluribus), Abelard declared that this definition of itself condemns the Realistic theory; only a name, not a thing, can be so predicated - not the name, however, as a flatus vocis or a collection of letters, but the name as used in discourse, the name as a sign, as having a meaning - in a word, not vox but sermo. Sermo est praedicabilis.
By these distinctions Abelard hoped to escape the consequences of extreme Nominalism, from which, as a matter of history, his doctrine has been distinguished under the name of Conceptualism, seeing that it lays stress not on the word as such but on the thought which the word is intended to convey. Moreover, Abelard evidently did not mean to imply that the distinctions of genera and species are of arbitrary or merely human imposition. His favourite expression for the universal is "quod de pluribus natum est praedicari" (a translation of Aristotle, De interpretatione, 7), which would seem to point to a real or objective counterpart of the products of our thought; and the traditional definitions of Boetius, whom he frequently quotes, support the same view of the concept as gathered from a number of individuals in virtue of a real resemblance. What Abelard combats is the substantiation of these resembling qualities, which leads to their being regarded as identical in all the separate individuals, and thus paves the way for the gradual undermining of the individual, the only true and indivisible substance. But he modifies his Nominalism so as to approach, though somewhat vaguely, to the position of Aristotle himself. At the same time he has nothing to say against the Platonic theory of universalia ante rem (see Idealism). Abelard's discussion of the problem (which it is right to say is on the whole incidental rather than systematic) is thus marked by an eclecticism which was perhaps the source at once of its strength and its weakness. But his brilliant ability and restless activity made him the central figure in the dialectical as in the other discussions of his time. To him was indirectly due, in the main, that troubling of the Realistic waters which resulted in so many modifications of the original thesis; and his own somewhat eclectic ruling on the question in debate came to be tacitly accepted in the schools, as the ardour of the disputants began to abate after the middle of the century.
Abelard's application of dialectic to theology betrayed the Nominalistic basis of his doctrine. He zealously combated the Tritheism of RoscellinusBernard of Clairvaux., but his own views on the Trinity were condemned by two councils (at Soissons 3' y ( in 1 121 and at Sens in 1140). Of the alternatives three Gods or una res - which his Nominalistic logic presented to Roscellinus, Roscellinus had chosen the first; Abelard recoiled to the other extreme, reducing the three Persons to three aspects or attributes of the Divine Being (Power, Wisdom and Love). For this he was called to account by Bernard of Clairvaux (1091-1153), the recognized guardian of orthodoxy in France. Nor can it be said that the instinct of the saint was altogether at fault. The germs of Rationalism were unquestionably present in several of Abelard's opinions, and still more so, the traditionalists must have thought, in his general attitude towards theological questions. "A doctrine is believed," he said, "not because God has said it, but because we are convinced by reason that it is so." "Doubt is the road to inquiry, and by inquiry we perceive the truth." The application of dialectic to theology was not new. Anselm had made an elaborate employment of reason in the interest of faith, but the spirit of pious subordination which had marked the demonstrations of Anselm seemed wanting in the argumentations of this bolder and more restless spirit; and the church, or at least an influential section of it, took alarm at the encroachments of Rationalism. Abelard's remarkable compilation Sic et Non was not calculated to allay their suspicions. In bringing together the conflicting opinions of the fathers on all the chief points of Christian dogmatics, it may be admitted that Abelard's aim was simply to make these contradictions the starting point of an inquiry which should determine in each case the true position and via media of Christian theology. Only such a determination could enable the doctrines to be summarily presented as a system of thought. The book was undoubtedly the precursor of the famous Books of Sentences of Abelard's own pupil Peter Lombard and others, and of all the Summae theologiae with which the church was presently to abound. But the antinomies, as they appeared in Abelard's treatise, without their solutions, could not but seem to insinuate a deep-laid scepticism with regard to authority. And even the proposal to apply the unaided reason to solve questions which had divided the fathers must have been resented by the more rigid churchmen as the rash intrusion of an over-confident Rationalism.
Realism was in the beginning of the 12th century the dominant doctrine and the doctrine of the church; the Nominalists were the innovators and the especial representatives of the Rationalistic tendency. In order to see the difference in this respect between the schools we have only to compare the peaceful and fortunate life of William of Champeaux (who enjoyed the friendship of St Bernard) with the agitated and persecuted existence of Roscellinus and, in a somewhat less degree, of Abelard. But now the greater boldness of the dialecticians awakened a spirit of general distrust in the exercise of reason on sacred subjects, and we find even a Realist like Gilbert de la Porree arraigned by Bernard and his friends before a general council on a charge of heresy (at Rheims, 1148). Though Gilbert was acquitted, the fact of his being brought to trial illustrates the growing spirit of suspicion. Those heresy-hunts show us the worst side of St Bernard, yet they are in a way just the obverse of his deep mystical piety. The same attitude is maintained by the mystical school of St VictorHugo of St Victor and the Summists.. Hugo of St Victor (1097-1141) St Victor declares that " the uncorrupted truth of things cannot be discovered by reasoning." The perils of dialectic are manifold, especially in the overbold spirit it engenders. Nevertheless Hugo, by the composition of his Summa sententiarum, endeavoured to give a methodical or rational presentation of the content of faith, and was thus the first of the so-called Summists. Richard of St Victor, prior of the monastery from 1162 to 1173, is still more absorbed in mysticism, and his successor Walter loses his temper altogether in abuse of the dialecticians and the Summists alike. The Summists have as much to say against the existence of God as for it, and the dialecticians, having gone to school to the pagans, have forgotten over Aristotle the way of salvation. Abelard, Peter Lombard, Gilbert de la Porree and Peter of Poitiers he calls the "four labyrinths of France."
This anger and contempt may have been partly justified by the discreditable state into which the study of logic had fallen. The speculative impulse was exhausted which marksDecline of logic. the end of the 11th and the first half of the 12th century logic - a period more original and more interesting in many ways than the great age of Scholasticism in the 13th century. By the middle of the century, logical studies had lost to a great extent their real interest and application, and had degenerated into trivial displays of ingenuity. On the other hand, the Summists occupied themselves merely in the systematizing of authorities. The mystics held aloof from both, and devoted themselves to the practical work of preaching and edification. The intellect of the age thus no longer exhibited itself as a unity. And it is significant of this that the ablest and most cultured representative of the second half of the century was rather an of historian of opinionJohn of Salisbury. than himself a philosopher or a theologian. John of Salisbury (Johannes Sarisberiensis) was educated in France in the years 1136-1148. The autobiographical account of these years contained in his Metalogicus is of the utmost value as a picture of the schools of the time; it is also one of the historian's chief sources as a record of the many-coloured logical views of the period. John recoiled from the idle casuistry which occupied his own logical contemporaries; and, mindful probably of their aimless ingenuity, he adds the caution that dialectic, valuable and necessary as it is, is " like the sword of Hercules in a pigmy's hand " unless there be added to it the accoutrement of the other sciences. Catholic in spirit rather than dogmatic, John ranks himself at times among the Academics, " since, in those things about which a wise man may doubt, I depart not from their footsteps." It is not fitting to subtilize overmuch, and in the end John of Salisbury's solution is the practical one, his charitable spirit pointing him in particular to that love which is the fulfilling of the law.
The first period of Scholasticism being thus at an end, there is an interval of nearly half a century without any noteworthy philosophical productions. The cause of the new development of ScholasticismExtension of knowledge of the works of Aristotle. in the 13th century was the acquisition for the first time of the complete works of Aristotle (see ledge of Classics and Arabian Philosophy). The doctrines and the works the works of Aristotle had been transmitted by the of Nestorians to the Arabs, and among those kept alive by a tole. succession of philosophers, first in the East and afterwards in the West. The chief of these, at least so far as regards the influence which they exerted on medieval philosophy, were Avicenna, Avempace and Averroes. The unification by the last-mentioned of Aristotle's active intellect in all men, and his consequent denial of individual immortality are well known. The universal human intellect is made by him to proceed from the divine by a series of Neoplatonic emanations. In the course of the 12th century the writings of these men were introduced into France by the Jews of Andalusia, of Marseilles and Montpellier. " These writings contained," says Haureau, " the text of the Organon, the Physics, the Metaphysics, the Ethics, the De anima, the Parva naturalia and a large number of other treatises of Aristotle, accompanied by continuous commentaries. There arrived besides by the same channel the glosses of Theophrastus, of Simplicius, of Alexander of Aphrodisias, of Philoponus, annotated in the same sense by the same hands. This was the rich but dangerous present made by the Mussulman school to the Christian " (i. 382). To these must be added the Neoplatonically inspired Fons Vitae of the Jewish philosopher and poet Ibn Gabirol, or Avicebron.
By special command of Raimund, archbishop of Toledo, the chief of these works were translated from the Arabic through the Castilian into Latin by the archdeacon Dominicus Gonzalvi with the aid of Johannes Avendeath (=ben David), a converted Jew, about 1150. About the same time, or not long after, the Liber de causis became known - a work destined to have a powerful influence on Scholastic thought, especially in the period immediately succeeding. Accepted at first as Aristotle's, and actually printed in the first Latin editions of his works, the book is in reality an Arabian compilation of Neoplatonic theses. Of a similar character was the pseudo-Aristotelian Theologia which was in circulation at least as early as 1200.
The first effects of this immense acquisition of new material were markedly unsettling on the doctrinal orthodoxy of the time. The apocryphal Neoplatonic treatisesFirst effects of the new knowledge. and the views of the Arabian commentators obscured for the effects of first students the genuine doctrine of Aristotle, and the the new 13th century opens with quite a crop of mystical knowledge. heresies. The mystical pantheism taught at Paris by Amalrich of Bena (d. 1207; see Amalric and Mysticism), though based by him upon a revival of Scotus Erigena, was doubtless connected in its origin with the Neoplatonic treatises which now become current. The immanence of God in all things and His incarnation as the Holy Spirit in themselves appear to have been the chief doctrines of the Amalricans. They are reported to have said, " Omnia unum, quia quicquid est est Deus." About the same time David of Dinant, in a book De tomis (rendered by Albertus De divisionibus), taught the identity of God with matter (or the indivisible principle of bodies) and nous (or the indivisible principle of intelligences) - an extreme Realism culminating in a materialistic pantheism. If they were diverse, he argued, there must exist above them some higher or common element or being, in which case this would be God, nous, or the original matter. The spread of the Amalrican doctrine led to fierce persecutions, and the provincial council which met at Paris in 1209 expressly decreed " that neither the books of Aristotle on natural philosophy, nor commentaries on the same, should be read, whether publicly or privately, at Paris." In 1215 this prohibition is renewed in the statutes of the university of Paris, as sanctioned by the papal legate. Permission was given to lecture on the logical books, both those which had been known all along and those introduced since 1128, but the veto upon the Physics is extended to the Metaphysics and the summaries of the Arabian commentators. By 1231, however, the fears of the church were beginning to be allayed. A bull of Gregory IX. in that year makes no mention of any Aristotelian works except the Physics. Finally, in 1254, we find the university officially prescribing how many hours are to be devoted to the explanation of the Metaphysics and the principal physical treatises of Aristotle. These dates enable us to measure accurately the stages by which the church accommodated itself to, and as it were took possession of, the Aristotelian philosophy. Growing knowledge of Aristotle's works and the multiplication of translations enabled students to distinguish the genuine Aristotle from the questionable accompaniments with which he had made his first appearance in Western Europe. Fresh translations of Aristotle and Averroes had already been made from the Arabic (IIepi ret ivropiat from the Hebrew) by Michael Scot, and Hermannus Alamannus, at the instance of the emperor Frederick II.; so that the whole body of Aristotle's works was at hand in Latin translations from about 1210 to 1225. Soon afterwards efforts began to be made to secure more literal translations direct from the Greek. Robert Grosseteste (d. 1253) was one of the first to stir in this matter, and he was followed by Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas. Half a century thus sufficed to remove the ban of the church, and soon Aristotle was recognized on all hands as " the philosopher " par excellence, the master of those that know. It even became customary to draw a parallel between him as the praecursor Christi in naturalibus and John the Baptist, the praecursor Christi in gratuitis.
This unquestioned supremacy was not yielded, however, at the very beginning of the period. The earlier doctors who avail themselves of Aristotle's works, while bowing to his authority implicitly in matters of logic, are generally found defending a Christianized Platonism against the doctrine of the Metaphysics.
So it is with Alexander of Hales (d. 1245), the first Scholastic who was acquainted with the whole of the Aristotelian works and the Arabian commentaries upon them.Alexander of Hales. He was more of a theologian than a philosopher; and in his chief work, of Summa universae theologiae, he simply employs his increased philosophical knowledge in the demonstration of theological doctrines. So great, however, did his achievement seem that he was honoured with the titles of Doctor irrefragabilis and Theologorum monarcha. Alexander of Hales belonged to the Franciscan order, and it is worth remarking that it was the mendicant orders which now came forwardMendicant friars. as the protagonists of Christian. learning and faith and, as it were, reconquered Aristotle for the church. During the first half of the 13th century, when the university of Paris was plunged in angry feuds with the municipality, feuds which even led at one time (1229) to the flight of the students in a body, the friars established teachers in their convents in Paris. After the university had settled its quarrels these continued to teach, and soon became formidable rivals of the secular lecturers. After a severe struggle for academical recognition they were finally admitted to all the privileges of the university by a bull of Alexander IV. in 1253. The Franciscans took the lead in this intellectual movement with Alexander of Hales and Bonaventura, but the Dominicans were soon able to boast of two greater names in Albert the Great and Thomas Aquinas. Still later Duns Scotus and Occam were both Franciscans. Alexander of Hales was succeeded in his chair of instructionJohn of Rochelle. by his pupil John of Rochelle, who died in 1271 but taught only till 1253. His treatise De anima, on which Haureau lays particular stress, is interesting as showing the greater scope now given to psychological discussions. This was a natural result of acquaintance with Aristotle's De anima and the numerous Greek and Arabian commentaries upon it, and it is observable in most of the writers that have still to be mentioned. Even the nature of the universals is no longer discussed from a purely logical or metaphysical point of view, but becomes connected with psychological questions. And, on the whole, the widening of intellectual interests is the chief feature by which the second period of Scholasticism may be distinguished from the first. In some respects there is more freshness and interest in the speculationsGeneral characteristics of second period. which burst forth so ardently in the end of the th and the first half of the 12th century. Albert and no doubt stood on a higher level than Anselm and Abelard, not merely by their wider range of knowledge but also by the intellectual massiveness of their achieve ments; but it may be questioned whether the earlier writers did not possess a greater force of originality and a keener talent. Originality was at no time the strong point of the middle ages, but in the later period it was almost of necessity buried under the mass of material suddenly thrust upon the age, to be assimilated. On the other hand, the influence of this new material is everywhere evident in the wider range of questions which are discussed by the doctors of the period. Interest is no longer to the same extent concentrated on the one question of the universals. Other questions, says Haureau, are " placed on the order of the day - the question of the elements of substance, that of the principle of individuation, that of the origin of the ideas, of the manner of their existence in the human understanding and in the divine thought, as well as various others of equal interest " (i. 420). Some of these, it may be said, are simply the old Scholastic problem in a different garb; but the extended horizon of which Haureau speaks is amply proved by mere reference to the treatises of Albert and St Thomas. They there seek to reproduce for their own time all the departments of the Aristotelian system.
John of Rochelle was succeeded in 1253 by John Fidanza, better known as Bonaventura (q.v.), who also had been a pupil of Alexander of Hales.Bonaventura. But the fame of " the Seraphic Doctor " is connected more closely with the history of mysticism (see Mysticism) than with the main stream of Scholastic thought. Like his master, he defended Plato - or what he considered to be the Platonic theory - against the attacks of Aristotle. Thus he defended the universalia ante rem as exemplars existent in the divine intelligence, and censured Aristotle's doctrine of the eternity of the world. Among the earlier teachers and writers of this century, we have also to name William of Auvergne (d. 1249),William of Auvergue. whose treatises De universo and De anima make extensive use of Aristotle and the Arabians, but display a similar Platonic leaning. The existence of intellections in our minds is, he maintains, a sufficient demonstration of the existence of an intelligible world, just as the ideas of sense are sufficient evidence of a sensible world. This archetypal world is the Son of God and true God. Robert Grosseteste, important in the sphere of ecclesiastical politicsGrosseteste., has been already mentioned as active in procuring translations of Aristotle from the Greek. He also wrote commentaries on logical and physical works of Aristotle. Michael Scot, the renowned wizard of popular traditionMichael Scot., earned his reputation by numerous works on astrology and alchemy. His connexion with philosophy was chiefly in the capacity of a translator. Vincent of Beauvais (d. 1264) was the author of an encyclopaedic work called Speculum majusVincent of Beauvais., in which, without much independent ability, he collected the opinions of ancient and medieval writers on the most diverse points, transcribing the fragments of their works which he deemed most interesting.
Albertus Magnus introduces us at once to the great age of Scholasticism (1193-1280). The limits of his long life include that of his still greater pupil, Thomas Aquinas (1227-1274).Albert and Aquinas. For this reason and because the system of Thomas is simply that of Albert rounded to a greater completeness and elaborated in parts by the subtle intellect of the younger man, it will be convenient not to separate the views of master and scholar, except where their differences make it necessary. Albert was " the first Scholastic who reproduced the whole philosophy of Aristotle in systematic order with constant reference to the Arabic commentators, and who remodelled it to meet the requirements of ecclesiastical dogma " (Ueberweg, i. 436). On this account he was called " the Universal Doctor." But in Albert it may be said that the matter was still too new and too multifarious to be thoroughly mastered. In St Thomas this is no longer so. The pupil, entering into his master's labours, was able from the first to take a more comprehensive survey of the whole field; and in addition he was doubtless endowed with an intellect which was finer, though it might not be more powerful, than his master's.
The monotheistic influence of Aristotle and his Arabian commentators shows itself in Albert and Aquinas, at the outset, in the definitive fashion in which the " mysteries ""Mysteries" excluded from philosophy. of the Trinity and the Incarnation are henceforth detached from the sphere of rational or philosophical theology. So long as the Neoplatonic influence remained strong, attempts were still made to demonstrate the doctrine of the Trinity, chiefly in a mystical sense as in Erigena, but also by orthodox churchmen like Anselm. Orthodoxy, whether Catholic or Protestant, has since generally adopted Thomas's distinction. The existence of God is maintained by Albert and Aquinas to be domonstrable by reason; but here again they reject the ontological argument of Anselm, and restrict themselves to the a posteriori proof, rising after the manner of Aristotle from that which is prior for us to that which is prior by nature or in itself. God is not fully comprehensible by us, says Albert, because the finite is not able to grasp the infinite, yet he is not altogether beyond our knowledge; our intellects are touched by a ray of his light, and through this contact we are brought into communion with him. God, as the only selfsubsistent and necessary being, is the creator of all things. Here the Scholastic philosophy comes into conflict with Aristotle's doctrine of the eternity of the world. Albert and Aquinas alike maintain the beginning of the world in time; time itself only exists since the moment of this miraculous creation. But Aquinas, though he holds the fact of creation to be rationally demonstrable, regards the beginning of the world in time as only an article of faith, the philosophical arguments for and against being inconclusive.
The question of universals, though fully discussed, no longer forms the centre of speculation. The great age of Scholasticism presents, indeed, a substantial unanimity upon this vexed point, maintaining at once, in different senses, the existence of the universals ante rem, re and post rem. Albert and Aquinas both profess the moderate Aristotelian Realism which treats genera and species only as substantiae secundae, yet as really inherent in the individuals, and constituting their form or essence. The universals, therefore, have no existence, as universals, in rerum natura; and Thomas endorses, in this sense, the polemic of Aristotle against Plato's hypostatized abstractions. But, in the Augustinian sense of ideas immanent in the divine mind, the universal ante rem may well be admitted as possessing real existence. Finally, by abstraction from the individual things of sense, the mind is able to contemplate the universal apart from its accompaniments (animal sine homine, asino, et aliis speciebus); these subjective existences are the universalia post rem of the Nominalists and Conceptualists. But the difficulties which embarrassed a former age in trying to conceive the mode in which the universal exists in the individual reappear in the systems of the present period as the problemThe principle of individuation. of the principium individuationis. The universal, as the form or essence of the individual, is called its quidditas (its " what-ness " or nature); but, besides possessing a general nature and answering to a general definition (i.e. being a " what "), every man, for example, is this particular man, here and now. It is the question of the particularity or " this-ness " (haecceitas, as Duns Scotus afterwards named it) that embarrasses the Scholastics. Albert and Aquinas agree in declaring that the principle of individuation is to be found in matter, not, however, in matter as a formless substrate but in determinate matter (materia signata), which is explained to mean matter quantitatively determined in certain respects. " The variety of individuals," says Albert, " depends entirely upon the division of matter," and Aquinas says the principle of the diversity of individuals of the same species is the quantitative division of matter," which his followers render by the abbreviated phrase materia quanta. A tolerably evident shortcoming of such a doctrine is that, while declaring the quantitative determination of matter to be the individual element in the individual, it gives no account of how such quantitative determination arises. Yet the problem of the individual is really contained in this prior question; for determinate matter already involves particularity or this-ness. This difficulty was presently raised by Duns Scotus and the realistically-inclined opponents of the Thomist doctrine. But, as Ueberweg points out, it might fairly be urged by Aquinas that he does not pretend to explain how the individual is actually created, but merely states what he finds to be an invariable condition of the existence of individuals. Apart from this general question, a difficulty arises on the Thomist theory in regard to the existence of spirits or disembodied personalities. This affects first of all the existence of angels, in regard to whom Aquinas admits that they are immaterial or separate forms (formae separatae). They possess the principle of individuation in themselves, he teaches, but plurality of individuals is in such a case equivalent to plurality of species (in eis tot sunt species quot sunt individua). The same difficulty, however, affects the existence of the disembodied human spirit. If individuality depends in matter, must we not conclude with Averroes that individuality is extinguished at death, and that only the universal form survives ? This conclusion, it is needless to say, is strenuously opposed both by Albert and by Aquinas. It is still admissible, however, to doubt whether the hateful consequence does not follow consistently from the theory laid down. Aquinas regards the souls of men, like the angels, as immaterial forms; and he includes in the soul-unit, so to speak, not merely the anima rationalis of Aristotle, but also the vegetative, sensitive, appetitive and motive functions. The latter depend, it is true, on bodily organs during our earthly sojourn, but the dependence is not necessary. The soul is created by God when the body of which it is the entelechy is prepared for it. It is the natural state of the soul to be united to a body, but being immaterial it is not affected by the dissolution of the body. The soul must be immaterial since it has the power of cognizing the universal; and its immortality is further based by St Thomas on the natural longing for unending existence which belongs to a being whose thoughts are not confined to the " here " and " now," but are able to abstract from every limitation.
Thomism, which was destined to become the official philosophy of the Roman Catholic Church, became in the first instance the accepted doctrine of the Dominican orderDuns Scotus., who were presently joined in this allegiance by the Augustinians. The Franciscan order, on the other hand, early showed their rivalry in attacks upon the doctrines of Albert and Aquinas. One of the first of these was the Reprehensorium seu correctorium fratris Thomae, published in 1285 by William Lamarre, in which the Averroistic consequences of the Thomist doctrine of individuation are already pressed home. More important was Richard of Middletown (d. c. 1300), who anticipated many of the objections urged soon after him by Duns Scotus (q.v.). His system is conditioned throughout by its relation to that of Aquinas, of which it is in effect an elaborate criticism. The chief characteristic of this criticism is well expressed in the name bestowed on Duns by his contemporaries - Doctor subtilis. It will be sufficient therefore to note the chief points in which the two antagonists differ. In general it may be said that Duns shows less confidence in the power of reason than Aquinas, and to that extent Erdmann and others are right in looking upon his system as the beginning of the decline of Scholasticism. For Scholasticism, as perfected by Aquinas, implies the harmony of reason and faith, in the sense that they both teach the same truths. To this general position Aquinas, it has been seen, makes several important exceptions; but the exceptions are few in number and precisely defined. Scotus extends the number of theological doctrines which are not, according to him, susceptible of philosophical proof, including in this class the creation of the world out of nothing, the immortality of the human soul, and even the existence of an almighty divine cause of the universe (though he admits the possibility of proving an ultimate cause superior to all else). His destructive criticism thus tended to reintroduce the dualism between faith and reason which Scholasticism had laboured through centuries to overcome, though Scotus himself, of course, had no such sceptical intention. But the way in which he founded the leading Christian doctrines (after confessing his inability to rationalize them) on the arbitrary will of God was undoubtedly calculated to help in the work of disintegration. And it is significant that this primacy of the undetermined will (voluntas superior intellectu) was the central contention of the Scotists against the Thomist doctrine. Voluntary action, Aquinas had said, is action originating in self or in an internal principle. The freedom here spoken of is a freedom from the immediacy of impulse - a freedom based upon our possession of reason as a power of comparison, memory and forethought. Nothing is said of an absolute freedom of the will; the will is, on the contrary,Freedom of the will. subordinated to the reason in so far as it is supposed to choose what reason pronounces good. Accordingly, the Thomist doctrine may be described as a moderate determinism. To this Scotus opposed an indeterminism of the extremest type, describing the will as the possibility of determining itself motivelessly in either of two opposite senses. Transferred to the divine activity, Aquinas's doctrine led him to insist upon the perseitas boni. The divine will is, equally with the human, subject to a rational determination; God commands what is good because it is good. Scotus, on the other hand, following out his doctrine of the will, declared the good to be so only by arbitrary imposition. It is good because God willed it, and for no other reason; had He commanded precisely the opposite course of conduct, that course would have been right by the mere fact of His commanding it. Far removed from actuality as such speculations regarding the priority of intellect or will in the Divine Being may seem to be, the side taken is yet a sure index of the general tendency of a philosophy. Aquinas is on the side of rationalism, Scotus on the side of scepticism.
While agreeing with Albert and Thomas in maintaining the threefold existence of the universals, Duns Scotus attacked the Thomist doctrine of individuation. The distinction of the universal essence and the individualizing determinations in the individual does not coincide, he maintained, with the distinction between form and matter. The additional determinations are as truly " form " as the universal essence. If the latter be spoken of as quidditas, the former may be called haecceitas. Just as the genus becomes the species by the addition of formal determinations called the difference, so the species becomes the individual by the addition of fresh forms of difference. As animal becomes homo by the addition of humanitas, so homo becomes Socrates by the addition of the qualities signified by Socratitas. It is false, therefore, to speak of matter as the principle of individuation; and if this is so there is no longer any foundation for the Thomist view that in angelic natures every individual constitutes a species apart. Notwithstanding the above doctrine, however, Scotus holds that all created things possess both matter and form - the soul, for example, possessing a matter of its own before its
The principle of individuation. Duns Scotus. Freedom of the will. union with the body. But the matter of spiritual beings is widely different from the matter of corporeal things. In his treatment of the conception of matter, Duns shows that he inclined much more to the Realism which makes for pantheism than was the case with the Aristotelianism of Thomas. A perfectly formless matter (materia prima) was regarded by him as the universal substratum and common element of all finite existences. He expressly intimates in this connexion his acceptance of Avicebron's position.
In the end of the 13th century and the beginning of the 14th the Thomists and Scotists divided the philosophical and theological world between them.Thomists and Scotists. Among the Thomists may be named John of Paris, Aegidius of Lessines (wrote in 1278), Bernard of Trilia (1240-1202) and Peter of Auvergne. More important was Aegidius of Colonna (1247-1316), general of the Augustinian order, surnamed Doctor Fundatissimus or Fundamentarius. Hervaeus Natalis (d. 1323) and Thomas Bradwardine (d. 1349) were determined opponents of Scotism. Siger of Brabant and Gottfried of Fontaines, chancellor of the university of Paris, taught Thomism at the Sorbonne; and through Humbert, abbot of Prulli, the doctrine won admission to the Cistercian order. Among the disciples of Duns Scotus are mentioned John of Bassolis, Francis of Mayrone, Antonius Andreae (d. c. 1320), John Dumbleton and Walter Burleigh (Burley) (b. 1275) of Oxford, Nicolaus (q.v.) of Lyra, Peter of Aquila and others. Henry Goethals or Henry of Ghent (Henricus Gandavensis, 1217-1293), surnamed Doctor solennis, occupied on the whole an independent and pre-Thomist position, leaning to an Augustinian Platonism (see Henry of Ghent). Gerard of Bologna (d. 1317) and Raoul of Brittany are rather to be ranked with the Thomists. So also is Petrus Hispanus (Pope John XXI.), who is chiefly important, however, as the author of the much-used manual Summulae logicales, in which the logic of the schools was expanded by the incorporation of fresh matter of a semi-grammatical character. Petrus Hispanus had predecessors, however, in William of Shyreswood (died 1249 as chancellor of Lincoln) and Lambert of Auxerre, and it has been hotly disputed whether the whole of the additions are not originally due to the Byzantine Synopsis of Psellus. By far the greatest disciple of Aquinas is Dante Alighieri, in whose Divina Commedia the theology and philosophy of the middle ages, as fixed by Saint Thomas, have received the immortality which poetry alone can bestow. Two names stand apart from the others of the century - Raimon Lull (1234-1315) and Roger Bacon (1214-1294). The Ars magna of the former professed by means of a species of logical machine to give a rigid demonstration of all the fundamental Christian doctrines, and was intended by its author as an unfailing instrument for the conversion of the Saracens and heathen. Roger Bacon was rather a pioneer of modern science than a Scholastic, and persecution and imprisonment were the penalty of his opposition to the spirit of his time.
The last stage of Scholasticism preceding its dissolution is marked by the revival of Nominalism in a militant form. This doctrine is already to be found in Petrus Aureolus, a Franciscan trained in the Scotist doctrine, and in William Durand of St Pourgain (d. 1332), a Dominican who passed over from Thomism to his later position. But the name with which the Nominalism of the 14th century is historically associated is that of the " Invincible Doctor," William of Occam William of Occam. who, (q.v.),, as the, author of a doctrine which came to be almost universally accepted, received from his followers the title Venerabilis inceptor. The hypostatizing of abstractions is the error against which Occam is continually fighting. The Realists, he considers, have greatly sinned against this maxim in their theory of a real universal or common element in all the individuals of a class. From one abstraction they are led to another, to solve the difficulties which are created by the realization of the first. Thus the great problem for the Realists is how to derive the individual from the universal. But the whole inquiry moves .in a world of unrealities. Everything that exists, by the mere fact of its existence, is individual (Quaelibet res, eo ipso quod est, est haec res). It it absurd, therefore, to seek for a cause of the individuality of the thing other than the cause of the thing itself. The individual is the only reality, whether the question be of an individual thing in the external world or an individual state in the world of mind. It is not the individual which needs explanation but the universal. Occam reproaches the " modern Platonists " for perverting the Aristotelian doctrine by these speculations, and claims the authority of Aristotle for his own Nominalistic doctrine. The universal is not anything really existing; it is a terminus or predicable (whence the followers of Occam were at first called Terminists). It is no more than a " mental concept signifying univocally several singulars." It is a natural sign representing these singulars, but it has no reality beyond that of the mental act by which it is produced and that of the singulars of which it is predicated. As regards the existence (if we may so speak) of the universal in mente, Occam indicates his preference, on the ground of simplicity, for the view which identifies the concept with the actus intelligendi, rather than for that which treats ideas as distinct entities within the mind. And in a similar spirit he explains the universalia ante rem as being, not substantial existences in God, but simply God's knowledge of things - a knowledge which is not of universals but of singulars, since these alone exist realiter. Such a doctrine, in the stress it lays upon the singular, the object of immediate perception, is evidently inspired by a spirit differing widely even from the moderate Realism of Thomas. It is a spirit which distrusts abstractions, which makes for direct observation, for inductive research. Occam, who is still a Scholastic, gives us the Scholastic justification of the spirit which had already taken hold upon Roger Bacon, and which was to enter upon its rights in the 15th and 16th centuries. Moreover, there is no denying that the new Nominalism not only represents the love of reality and the spirit of induction, but also contains in itself the germs of that empiricism and:sensualism so frequentlyassociated with the former tendencies. Aquinas had regarded the knowledge of the universal as an intellectual activity which might even be advanced in proof of the immortality of the soul. Occam, on the other hand, maintains in the spirit of Hobbes that the act of abstraction does not presuppose any activity of the understanding or will, but is a spontaneous secondary process by which the first act (perception) or the state it leaves behind (habitus derelictus ex primo actu = Hobbes's " decaying sense ") is naturally followed, as soon as two or more similar representations are present.
In another way also Occam heralds the dissolution of Scholasticism. The union of philosophy and theology is the mark of the middle ages, but in Occam their severance is complete. A pupil of ScotusThe Twofold Truth., he carried his master's criticism farther, and denied that any theological doctrines were rationally demonstrable. Even the existence and unity of God were to be accepted as articles of faith. The Centilogium theologicum has often been cited as an example of thoroughgoing scepticism under a mask of solemn irony. But if that were so, it would still remain doubtful, as Erdmann remarks, whether the irony is directed against the church or against reason. The most interesting example of this method is seen in the Tractatus de sacramento altaris where Occam accepts the doctrine of Real Presence as a matter of Faith, and sets forth a rational theory of the Eucharist (afterwards adopted by Luther) known as " Consubstantiation." On the whole, there is no reason to doubt Occam's honest adhesion to each of the two guides whose contrariety he laboured to display. None the less is the position in itself an untenable one and the parent of scepticism. The principle of the twofold nature of truth thus embodied in Occam's system was unquestionably adopted by many merely to cloak their theological unbelief; and it is significant of the internal dissolution of Scholasticism. Occam denied the title of a science to theology, emphasizing, like Scotus, its practical character. He also followed his master in laying stress on the arbitrary will of God as the foundation of morality.
Nominalism was at first met by the opposition of the church and the constituted authorities. In 1339 Occam's treatises were put under a ban by the university of Paris, and in the following year Nominalism was solemnly condemned. Nevertheless the new doctrine spread on all hands. Dominicans like Armand de Beauvoir (d. 1334) and Gregory of Rimini accepted it. It was taught in Paris by Albert of Saxony (about 1350–1360) and Marsilius of Inghen (about 1364–1377, afterwards at Heidelberg), as well as by Johannes Buridanus, rector of the university as early as 1327. We find, Spread of Nominalism.however, as late as 1473 the attempt made to bind all teachers in the university of Paris by oath to teach the doctrines of Realism; but this expiring effort was naturally ineffectual, and from 1481 onward even the show of obedience was no longer exacted. Pierre d’Ailly (1350–1425) and John Gerson (Jean Charlier de Gerson, 1363–1429), both chancellors of the university of Paris, and the former a cardinal of the church, are the chief figures among the later Nominalists. Both of them, however, besides their philosophical writings, are the authors of works of religious edification and mystical piety. They thus combine temporarily in their own persons what was no longer combined in the spirit of the time, or rather they satisfy by turns the claims of reason and faith. Both are agreed in placing repentance and faith far above philosophical knowledge. They belong indeed (Gerson in particular) to the history of mysticism rather than of Scholasticism, and the same may be said of another cardinal, Nicolaus of Cusa (1401–1464), who is sometimes reckoned among the last of the Scholastics, but who has more affinity with Erigena than with any intervening teacher.The “last of the Scholastics.” The title “last of the Scholastics” is commonly given to Gabriel Biel, the summarizer of Occam’s doctrine. The title is not actually correct, and might be more fitly borne by Francisco Suarez, who died in 1617. But after the beginning of the 15th century Scholasticism was divorced from the spirit of the time, and it is useless to follow its history further. As has been indicated in the introductory remarks, the end came both from within and from without. The harmony of reason and faith had given place to the doctrine of the dual nature of truth. While this sceptical thesis was embraced by philosophers who had lost their interest in religion, the spiritually minded sought their satisfaction more and more in a mysticism which frequently cast itself loose from ecclesiastical trammels. The 14th and 15th centuries were the great age of German mysticism, and it was not only in Germany that the tide set this way. Scholasticism had been the expression of a universal church and a common learned language. The university of Paris, with its scholars of all nations numbered by thousands, was a symbol of the intellectual unity of Christendom; and in the university of Paris, it may almost be said, Scholasticism was reared and flourished and died. But the different nations and tongues of modern Europe were now beginning to assert their individuality, and men’s interests ceased to be predominatingly ecclesiastical. Scholasticism, therefore, which was in its essence ecclesiastical, had no longer a proper field for its activity. It was in a manner deprived of its accustomed subject-matter and died of inanition. Philosophy, as Hauréau finely says, was the passion of the 13th century; but in the 15th humanism, art and the beginnings of science and of practical discovery were busy creating a new world, which was destined in due time to give birth to a new philosophy.
Authorities.—Besides the numerous works quoted in articles on the individual philosophers, see Hauréau, Histoire de la philosophic scolastique (2 vols., 1850; revised and expanded in 1870 as Histoire de la phil. scol.), Kaulich, Geschichte d. schol. Philosophie; Stockl, Gesch. der Phil. des Mittelalters; Karl Werner, Die Scholastik des späteren Mittelalters; and, on a smaller scale, de Wulf’s Histoire de la phil. medievale (1900). Supplementary details are given in Hauréau’s Singularites historiques et litteraires (1861) and in R. L. Poole’s Illustrations of the History of Mediaeval Thought (1884), while much light is thrown upon the minuter history of the period by the Chartularium Universitatis Parisiensis edited by Denifle and Chatelain in 1894, by Hauréau’s Notices et extraits de quelques MS. latins de la Bibliothèque Nationale (6 vols., 1890–1895) and by the Beiträge zur Geschichte d. Phil. d. Mittelalters, in course of publication since 1891 by Baeumker and others. A critical survey of recent literature on Scholasticism is given by Baeumker in the Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie, vols. v. and x. The accounts of medieval thought given by Ritter, Erdmann and Ueberweg in their general histories of philosophy are exceedingly good. That of Windelband, though going less into detail, is a remarkably fresh treatment of the problems involved. There are also notices of the leading systems in Milman’s History of Latin Christianity; and the same writers are considered from the theological side in many works devoted to theology, and the history of dogma. The psychology of the Scholastic writers is ably dealt with in Siebeck’s Die Psychologie von Aristoteles bis zu Thomas von Aquino (1885). Jourdain's Recherches critiques sur l’âge et l’origine des traductions latines d’Aristote (Paris, 1819; 2nd ed. 1843); Rousselot’s Études sur la philosophie dans le moyen âge (1840–1842), Cousin’s Introduction to his Ouvrages inedits d’Abelard (1836), and Prantl’s Geschichte der Logik im Abendlande (4 vols., 1855–1870) are invaluable aids in studying the history of medieval thought. (A. S. P.-P.; X.)
- The common designation of Aristotle in the middle ages.
- Milman's Latin Christianity, ix. 101.
- Victor Cousin, Ouvrages inedits d'Abelard, Introd. p. lxxxv.
- Metalogicus, i. 27, quoted in Poole's Illustrations of Medieval Thought.
- This treatise, first published by Cousin in his Ouvrages inedits d'Abelard, was attributed by him to Abelard, and he was followed in this opinion by Haureau; but Prantl adduces reasons which seem satisfactory for believing it to be the work of an unknown writer of somewhat later date (see Prantl. Geschichte d. Logik, ii. 143).
- Among these may be mentioned Robert Pulleyn (d. 1150), Peter Lombard (d. 1164), called the Magister sententiarum, whose work became the text-book of the schools, and remained so for centuries. Hundreds of commentaries were written upon it. Peter of Poitiers, the pupil of Peter the Lombard, flourished about 1160-1170. Other names are Robert of Melun, Hugo of Amiens, Stephen Langton and William of Auxerre. More important is Alain de Lille (Alanus de Insulis), who died at an advanced age in 1203. His De arte seu de articulis catholicae fidei is a Summa of Christian theology, but with a greater infusion than usual of philosophical reasoning. Alanus was acquainted with the celebrated Liber de causis.
- This principle appeared occasionally at an earlier date, for example in Simon of Tournay about 1200. It was expressly censured by Pope John XXI. in 1276. But only in the period following Occam did it become a current doctrine.