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The Revival of Classical

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Patrick Dennis

on 20 February 2015

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Transcript of The Revival of Classical

The Revival of Classical Learning in the Latin West
The Translation Tradition
- Important for the dissemination of natural philosophy in the Roman world.
- Significance of Marcus Aurelius's death in 180 C.E.
- Significance of division of Roman Empire into Western and Eastern Empires (4th c.)

BOETHIUS (480-524 C.E.)
- Epitomized the translation tradition in the later Roman Empire
- Translated a number of Aristotle's logical works (
Categories
,
De interpretatione
, ...)
-
The Consolation of Philosophy
indicates his sizeable knowledge of Greek thought.
The Encyclopedic Tradition
ROMAN PERIOD
- Encyclopedias used to popularize philosophical and scientific thought.
ex: Pliny the Elder,
Natural History
(approx. 18 volumes)

EARLY MEDIEVAL PERIOD
- Encyclopedias essential to the continuation of natural philosophy.
- Such works often did not venture far from their subject matter.
ex: Isidore of Seville,
Etymologies
Venerable Bede,
Ecclesiastical History of the English People, On the Nature of Things, Chronologies.


Greek Knowledge in the Islamic Tradition
SURVIVAL OF GREEK KNOWLEDGE
- First brought to the east by Alexander the Great (4th c. B.C.E.)
- Nestorian Christian missionaries also disseminated Greek works.
- This would contribute to the "Hellenization" of the Islamic world.

RECEPTION OF GREEK KNOWLEDGE IN THE ISLAMIC WORLD
- Translation of Greek works into Arabic began in the ninth century.
- Greek thought assimilated more seamlessly than in Latin West.
- Arabic philosophers wrote numerous commentaries on:
- Aristotelian works, other Greek scientific and logical treatises
The Development of the Medieval Educational Framework
THE SEVEN LIBERAL ARTS
Trivium:
Rhetoric, Grammar, Dialectic (Logic)
Quadrivium
: Music, Arithmetic, Geometry, Astronomy

MARTIANUS CAPELLA (c.410-439 C.E.)
- First to outline the Seven Liberal Arts as the foundation of education.
- Stresses the importance of mathematics in
The Marriage of Philology and Mercury
.

Early Medieval Science (c.410-1000)
Encyclopedic Tradition:
- Importance for the preservation of ancient learning.

Translation Tradition:
- Importance in early centuries C.E.
- Susceptibility to political uncertainty in later Roman Empire


Ibn Sina and Ibn Rushd
IBN SINA (L. AVICENNA) (10th c.)
- Wrote a number of commentaries on Aristotle's works.
- Wrote the Canon of Medicine, the most significant medieval medical treatise.

IBN RUSHD (L. AVERROES) (12th c.)
- Regarded as the authority on Aristotle's works
- Came to be called "The Commentator" for his insightful treatment of Aristotle's thought.
The Revival of Learning in the West
- Much of the knowledge of antiquity had been lost by the 7th century
- Education (outside of monasteries) was not emphasized.


CHARLEMAGNE (r. 800-814)
- Initiated educational reforms in the Holy Roman Empire
- Brought scholars from throughout Europe to Aachen to oversee progress
- Educational reforms became known as the
Carolingian Renaissance
.


CHARLEMAGNE'S LEGACY
- Educational reforms led to the establishment of monastery schools.
- With growth of interest, monastery schools became cathedral schools.
- Ultimately, the rise of the university would stem from Charlemagne's efforts.

The Rise of the University
- Aristotle's natural philosophy would return to the Latin West in the 12th century.
- This development coincided with the rise of the university.

Italian Universities
University of Bologna (c.1150)
: First university, specializing in (canon) law.
University of Padua (1222)
: Specialized in medicine.

English and French Universities
University of Paris (c.1200)
: First university outside of Italy; specialized in theology
University of Oxford (c.1200-1220)
: Specialized in theology.
Cambridge University (c.1220)
: Specialized in theology
.
The University Curriculum
- Reflected the level of the Church's influence on medieval education.
- Before Aristotle, Neoplatonism (and Platonism) were most influential
because of their compatibility with Christian doctrine.
Aristotle and the University Curriculum
(13th c.)
- Aristotelian thought presented certain challenges:
1. Aristotle and the Eternity of the World
2. Aristotle and the Mortality of the Soul
3. Aristotle and Teleology
Responses to Aristotle's Works
- Responses were dependent on the university (and particularly
their proximity to Rome)
- Oxford: Response was minimal
- Paris: Repercussions for teaching Aristotle were more serious.
- 1210, 1215, 1231: Teaching of Aristotle's scientific works banned at
Paris.
- 1241: Bans were finally lifted.
- 1270: Church issues its first set of condemnations against Aristotle.
- 1277: Church issues a second condemnation (219 propositions)
Oxford's Response
: only 30 propositions posed a threat
Paris's Response
: all 219 propositions were condemned.
The Medieval Cosmos
- Reflected Aristotle's division of the celestial and sublunar regions.
- Order and overall movement of planets was a hybrid between Aristotle
and Ptolemy.
- Movement in the heavens attributed to an unmoved mover, or
Primum


Mobile
.
Sublunar Region
- Concerned primarily with substance, change, and motion
- Form (agent) + Matter (passive recipient) =
Substance
.
-
Change
: Generation/Corruption; Alteration; Augmentation/
Diminution; Local Motion.
- The issue of
motion
centered on how it is generated.
Full transcript