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Introduction to Tomy Comentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle

Introduction to Tomy Comentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle

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Published by: Lisandro Andres Cardenas Carrero on Nov 08, 2012
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Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Title-page p iiiCommentary on the Metaphysics of AristotleLibrary of Living Catholic ThoughtVOLUME IST. THOMAS AQUINASCommentary on the Metaphysics of AristotleTRANSLATED BY JOHN P. ROWANPROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHYDUQUESNE UNIVERSITYLibrary of Living Catholic ThoughtVOLUME IHENRY REGNERY COMPANYChicago 1961Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Nihil Obstat & Imprimatur p ivNihil Obstat: R. W. Schmidt, S.J., Censor DeputatusImprimatur: Albert Cardinal Meyer, S.T.D., S.S.L.Archiepiscopus Chicagiensis, March 29, 1961Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Copyright Information p iv(C) Henry Regnery Company 1961Manufactured in the United States of AmericaLibrary of Congress Catalog Card Number 61-16878Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Contents p vCONTENTSVOLUME IIntroductionPrologue of St. ThomasBook I ({A}) Introduction to First Philosophy. History of Metaphysical InquiryII ({a}) The Search for Truth and Causes
III ({B}) Metaphysical ProblemsIV ({G}) Being and First PrinciplesV ({D}) Lexicon of Philosophical TermsList of Works CitedCommentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 2 Contents p vVOLUME IIVI ({E}) The Scope of MetaphysicsVII ({Z} Substance, Essence and DefinitionVIII ({E}) The Principles of Sensible Substances: Matter and FormIX ({Th}) Actuality and PotentialityX ({I}) UnityXI ({K}) Recapitulation on the Nature and Subject of Metaphysics. MotionXII ({L}) Mobile and Immobile Substance. The Prime MoverList of Works CitedCommentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiINTRODUCTIONI--THE TRANSLATIONThe following translation of St. Thomas' Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle includes a translation of the version of Aristotle's text that is found in the printededitions of the Commentary now in use and commonly thought to be the one employedby St. Thomas. The inclusion of a translation of this version appeared necessary from thevery beginning for two reasons. First, since the Commentary is a detailed analysis andexposition of the text of Aristotle, it becomes fully intelligible only in relation to the text,to which it makes constant reference as its point of departure. Second, since the versionfrequently departs in some measure from the original, it would not have proved feasibleto employ one of the modern English translations †1 based on the Greek.Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiThe translation both of the Commentary and of the version of Aristotle is basedon the edition of Raymund M. Spiazzi, O.P. This edition is fundamentally that of M. R.Cathala, O.P., with emendations.†2 Some assistance in clearing up obscurities, such astypographical errors and the like, was obtained by consulting the edition of Parma †3 andthat of Vivès.†4 However, the usefulness of these editions in this regard proved to belimited inasmuch as both the edition of Vivès and that of Cathala use Parma as their basictext.†5Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiSince the Cathala-Spiazzi edition is not a critical one, it was necessary in certaininstances to alter the reading of the text. Where such alterations are made and are notobvious, they are indicated in a footnote, and the reason for making them is stated when
such justification appears necessary. The more important variations between the Greek text as given in Bekker and the Latin version of Aristotle's text are also indicated infootnotes. If the reader wishes to make comparisons between the version, the Greek text,and the English translations, he will find the Bekker reference numbers given at thebeginning of each lesson useful in locating the passages in which he is interested.Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiiThe translation does not pretend to be a transliteration of the original. Since strictadherence to this method very often results in the use of latinisms and word structuresthat are foreign to the English reader, it seemed advisable, if the thought of the originalwas to be presented in as accurate and readily understandable a form as possible, torender the Latin as idiomatically and meaningfully as current English usage permits.Where the English words and phrases used to translate technical Latin terms are not thosecommonly employed in presenting the thought of St. Thomas and of Aristotle, the readerwill find this indicated either by a footnote or by giving the Latin in parenthesis after theword or phrase in question. Throughout the whole translation the aim has been to produceas faithful and accurate a rendition of St. Thomas' work as circumstances permit. Theextent to which this has been achieved will be left for the critics to decide.Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiiThe reader will find that the form of the introductory statements customarily usedby St. Thomas to designate the passages of Aristotle's text which he is about to explain,has been abbreviated. This has been done to avoid repetition and simplify the reading; forexample, such statements as, "Then when Aristotle says, 'Animals by nature (2) . . . ,"and, "Then when he says, 'Furthermore, it is necessary (126) . . . ," have been shortenedto read, "Animals by nature (2)," and "Furthermore, it is necessary (126)."Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiiThe sections of the Commentary are indicated by numbers preceded by C, and arethe same as those originally established by Cathala. Numbers not preceded by Cdesignate the sections of the version of Aristotle, and are identical with those given bySpiazzi in his revision of the Cathala edition. The use of such numbers, singly or incombination, throughout the text, simplifies the matter of references and cross referenceswhere such are specified by the author, or where they would otherwise seem to behelpful. Thus in the case (267:C 489) the first number designates the section of theversion of Aristotle, and the second, the section of St. Thomas' Commentary on thispassage.Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle Vol 1 Trans. Intro. p viiiII--THE NATURE OF THE COMMENTARYA commentary or exposition of the thought of some writer constituted one of thebasic methods of teaching employed in medieval schools. Medieval writers inherited thecommentary as a pedagogical instrument from two sources, the Fathers and Arabicwriters, both of whom adopted it in turn from a common source--the literary andscientific writings of the last period of Greek thought. In the West the commentary took various forms. One type which appears as early as the sixth century is that employed byBoethius in certain of his writings, for example, his expositions of the Categories and theDe Interpretatione of Aristotle. Here a portion of the original text in translation is given

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