New Wine in Old Vessels: Alexander of Aphrodisias as a Source for Averroes’ Metaphysics, 2021
By: Matteo Di Giovanni
Title New Wine in Old Vessels: Alexander of Aphrodisias as a Source for Averroes’ Metaphysics
Type Book Section
Language English
Date 2021
Published in Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
Pages 59–76
Categories Alexander of Aphrodisias, Commentary, Aristotle, Metaphysics
Author(s) Matteo Di Giovanni
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
Besides his best-known merits as a philosopher, Averroes stands out in the history of the classical tradition as a unique testimony to Alexander’s lost commentary on Metaphysics Lambda and, through it, his interpretation of the argument running through the whole text of the Metaphysics. The gist of this interpretation is laid out in the elaborate prologue to the Lambda commentary that goes back to Alexander and is preserved by Averroes. Building on this textual evidence, the study investigates Averroes’ philosophical appropriation of the Alexander material that is interwoven into the fabric of the former’s exegesis, from the earlier epitome to the later long commentary on the Metaphysics. A number of doctrines turn out to be ultimately inspired by Alexander, including Averroes’ view of the tripartite structure of metaphysics, his notion of book Gamma as an epistemology (“specific logic”) for metaphysics, the function of Delta, the downgrading of both mental and accidental being in Epsilon, and Aristotle’s argument in Zeta. Averroes’ debt to his source is brought to the fore without prejudicing the further question, awaiting future research, of whether Averroes’ acquaintance with Alexander’s line of interpretation was always unmediated or any figures in the philosophical tradition played some role in its transmission.

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Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, 2021
By: Pietro B. Rossi (Ed.), Matteo Di Giovanni (Ed.), Andrea A. Robiglio (Ed.)
Title Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
Type Edited Book
Language undefined
Date 2021
Publication Place Turnhout
Publisher Brepols
Series Studia artistarum
Volume 45
Categories Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias, Albert, Avicenna, Renaissance, Metaphysics, Logic
Author(s) Pietro B. Rossi , Matteo Di Giovanni , Andrea A. Robiglio
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
The greatest ancient interpreter of Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias (fl. 200 AD) exerted a profound and enduring influence upon philosophy from Boethius until the modern era. Alexander’s interpretations laid the foundation for multiple philosophical views which were promoted as quintessentially Aristotelian by both Islamic and Latin thinkers throughout the Middle Ages. In the Renaissance, the University of Padua, a leading center of philosophical education and thought, established a scholarly tradition named “Alexandrinism” after him.

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Ibn Rušd on the Structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics, 2010
By: Rüdiger Arnzen
Title Ibn Rušd on the Structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics
Type Article
Language English
Date 2010
Journal Documenti e studi sulla tradizione filosofica medievale
Volume 21
Pages 375–410
Categories Metaphysics, Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias
Author(s) Rüdiger Arnzen
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
The structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics was a matter of dispute among ancient and Medieval Greek, Arabic, and Latin-writing commentators. The present article investigates the question in which way the Arab philosopher Averroes dealt with this problem in his so-called Epitome and his literal commentary on the Metaphysics. It tries to show that in the Epitome Averroes restructured the contents of the Metaphysics according to his own conception of this discipline, and that this conception was partly indebted to his own main sources, al-Fārābī and Ibn Sīnā, partly independent from these. Furthemore, the article examines whether and, if so, in which whay Averroes changed his mind about metaphysics as such and/or the structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics in his late literal commentary. It is argued that Averroes discarded there some of his earlier Avicennian positions in favour of a certain rapprochement to positions held by Alexander of Aphrodisias, but never gave up in general his overall conception of the Metaphysics as displayed in the Epitome.

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Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, 2021
By: Pietro B. Rossi (Ed.), Matteo Di Giovanni (Ed.), Andrea A. Robiglio (Ed.)
Title Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
Type Edited Book
Language undefined
Date 2021
Publication Place Turnhout
Publisher Brepols
Series Studia artistarum
Volume 45
Categories Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias, Albert, Avicenna, Renaissance, Metaphysics, Logic
Author(s) Pietro B. Rossi , Matteo Di Giovanni , Andrea A. Robiglio
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
The greatest ancient interpreter of Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias (fl. 200 AD) exerted a profound and enduring influence upon philosophy from Boethius until the modern era. Alexander’s interpretations laid the foundation for multiple philosophical views which were promoted as quintessentially Aristotelian by both Islamic and Latin thinkers throughout the Middle Ages. In the Renaissance, the University of Padua, a leading center of philosophical education and thought, established a scholarly tradition named “Alexandrinism” after him.

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Ibn Rušd on the Structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics, 2010
By: Rüdiger Arnzen
Title Ibn Rušd on the Structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics
Type Article
Language English
Date 2010
Journal Documenti e studi sulla tradizione filosofica medievale
Volume 21
Pages 375–410
Categories Metaphysics, Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias
Author(s) Rüdiger Arnzen
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
The structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics was a matter of dispute among ancient and Medieval Greek, Arabic, and Latin-writing commentators. The present article investigates the question in which way the Arab philosopher Averroes dealt with this problem in his so-called Epitome and his literal commentary on the Metaphysics. It tries to show that in the Epitome Averroes restructured the contents of the Metaphysics according to his own conception of this discipline, and that this conception was partly indebted to his own main sources, al-Fārābī and Ibn Sīnā, partly independent from these. Furthemore, the article examines whether and, if so, in which whay Averroes changed his mind about metaphysics as such and/or the structure of Aristotle's Metaphysics in his late literal commentary. It is argued that Averroes discarded there some of his earlier Avicennian positions in favour of a certain rapprochement to positions held by Alexander of Aphrodisias, but never gave up in general his overall conception of the Metaphysics as displayed in the Epitome.

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New Wine in Old Vessels: Alexander of Aphrodisias as a Source for Averroes’ Metaphysics, 2021
By: Matteo Di Giovanni
Title New Wine in Old Vessels: Alexander of Aphrodisias as a Source for Averroes’ Metaphysics
Type Book Section
Language English
Date 2021
Published in Alexander of Aphrodisias in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
Pages 59–76
Categories Alexander of Aphrodisias, Commentary, Aristotle, Metaphysics
Author(s) Matteo Di Giovanni
Publisher(s)
Translator(s)
Besides his best-known merits as a philosopher, Averroes stands out in the history of the classical tradition as a unique testimony to Alexander’s lost commentary on Metaphysics Lambda and, through it, his interpretation of the argument running through the whole text of the Metaphysics. The gist of this interpretation is laid out in the elaborate prologue to the Lambda commentary that goes back to Alexander and is preserved by Averroes. Building on this textual evidence, the study investigates Averroes’ philosophical appropriation of the Alexander material that is interwoven into the fabric of the former’s exegesis, from the earlier epitome to the later long commentary on the Metaphysics. A number of doctrines turn out to be ultimately inspired by Alexander, including Averroes’ view of the tripartite structure of metaphysics, his notion of book Gamma as an epistemology (“specific logic”) for metaphysics, the function of Delta, the downgrading of both mental and accidental being in Epsilon, and Aristotle’s argument in Zeta. Averroes’ debt to his source is brought to the fore without prejudicing the further question, awaiting future research, of whether Averroes’ acquaintance with Alexander’s line of interpretation was always unmediated or any figures in the philosophical tradition played some role in its transmission.

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