The origin of transcendental thought is not to be sought in Kant's philosophy but is a medieval achievement. This book provides for the first time a complete history of the doctrine of the transcendentals, from its beginning in the "Summa de bono" of Philip the Chancellor (ca. 1225) up to its most extensive systematic account in the "Metaphysical Disputations" of Francisco Suárez (1597). The book also shows the importance of the doctrine for the understanding of philosophy in the Middle Ages. Metaphysics is called "First Philosophy", not because it deals with the first, divine being, but because it treats that which is first in a cognitive sense, the transcendental concepts of "being", "one", "true" and "good".
Winner of the
Journal of the History of Philosophy Book Prize competition for the best book in the history of western philosophy published in 2013.
Jan A. Aertsen, Ph.D. (1982) in Philosophy, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Director Emeritus of the Thomas Institute at the University of Cologne. He has published extensively on Thomas Aquinas and the doctrine of the transcendentals including
Nature and Creature, Thomas Aquinas's Way of Thought (Brill, 1988) and
Medieval Philosophy and the Transcendentals. The Case of Thomas Aquinas (Brill, 1996).
Preface ... xix
Introduction ... 1
Chapter One The Concept of transcendens in Medieval Thought: What is beyond and what is common ... 13
Chapter Two Conditions, Presuppositions and Sources of a Doctrine of the Transcendentals ... 35
Chapter Three The Beginning of the Doctrine of the Transcendentals (ca. 1225): Philip the Chancellor ... 109
Chapter Four The Doctrine of the Transcendentals in Franciscan Masters ... 135
Chapter Five Albertus Magnus: Different Traditions of thought and the Transcendentals ... 177
Chapter Six Thomas Aquinas: A First Model ... 209
Chapter Seven Henry of Ghent: The onto-theological transformation of the doctrine ... 273
Chapter Eight The German Dominican School: Dietrich of Freiberg and Meister Eckhart ... 315
Chapter Nine Duns Scotus: A Turn in the Doctrine of the Transcendentals ... 371
Chapter Ten Discussions on the Scotist Conception ... 433
Chapter Eleven The Doctrine of the Transcendentals in N
Chapter Twelve Neoplatonic Critiques of Transcendental Metaphysics ... 545
Chapter Thirteen The Doctrine of the Transcendentals in Renaissance Philosophy ... 569
Chapter Fourteen The “Metaphysical Disputations” of Francisco Suárez: Between Scholasticism and Modernity ... 587
Chapter Fifteen The Doctrine of the “Supertranscendentals”: An Alternative Model? ... 635
Chapter Sixteen Conclusion: The importance of the transcendental way of thought for medieval philosophy ... 657
Bibliography ... 707
Index Nominum ... 741
Index Rerum ... 747
All those interested in medieval philosophy, the history of philosophy and intellectual history, as well as medievalists and theologians.