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Philoponus in the Arabo-Latin tradition
In the mid-sixth century of our era, two Neoplatonists - the pagan Simplicius and the Christian John Philoponus - confronted one another on a number of issues in their exegesis of the works of Aristotle. One of the main questions at issue between the two adversaries was the question of the eternity of the world. Had it always existed, as Aristotle believed, following Aristotle in book 8 of the Physics and the De Caelo, or had in come into existence or been generated (Greek gignesthai, egeneto), as Philoponus maintained, following the doctrine of the Bible and a literalist interpretation of Plato's Timaeus 1? Philoponus' arguments have already attracted scholarly attention, and it is to be hoped that new light will be shed on his debate with Simplicius by the first complete English translation of Book one of his Commentary on the Physics, which contains his arguments against Book six of Philoponus' Against Aristotle on the Eternity of the World2. In any case, aspects of the debate between them, as vehicled by Arabic translations of several of Philoponus' key anti-Aristotelian and anti-Proclan works, were of tremendous importance for the development of Islamic theology and philosophy. Philoponus' views were partially accepted by al-Kindī, through whom they were influential upon the so-called Plotiniana Arabica3, and by al-Ghazālī ; and they were refuted by Fārābī. Echoes of the latter's arguments, transmitted by ibn Bājja, reached Maimonides and Averroes, whence they provided food for the reflection of Thomas Aquinas. The present article is envisaged as a survey of the some of the works and doctrines of John Philoponus, as they exerted an influence, through various intermediaries, particularly Fārābī and Averroes, to Thomas Aquinas. I begin with brief surveys of the Latin and Arabic tradition of Philoponus, followed by an analysis of some of the latter's chief arguments in favor of the world's temporal creation. The central part of the paper consists in a study of the text and translation (provided in an Appendix) of a selection of Averroes' quotations from and
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On the historical and philosophical background to these issues, cf. Chase 2011.
Philoponus' arguments, but not Simplicius' responses, have been translated by Wildberg 1987. The translation by I. Bodnar, M. Chase and M. Share of Simplicius In Phys. Books 1-5, is scheduled to appear in R. Sorabji's series Ancient Commentators on Aristotle in the course of 2012. Cf. Endress 1997, 56-57 ; 2002, 30 ; D'Ancona 2005, 1 : 36-41. I hope to return to this important subject in future publications.
2 discussions of Philoponus' arguments, in the course of which I argue for the importance of taking Simplicius' text into consideration, which often provides the requisite doctrinal background for understanding Philoponus, and hence the Arabo-Islamic authors who adopted and adapted his arguments.
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This paper discusses the influence of the works and doctrines of John Philoponus (c. 490574), as it came down through various intermediaries to Thomas Aquinas. One branch of this tradition is fairly straightforward, another less well-known and rather complex. Following the time-honored Aristotelian tradition, I'll discuss the clearest tradition first, then progress to the less clear. I. Philoponus and Thomas I.1. The direct Latin tradition : Simplicius In De Caelo No complete work by the Neoplatonist philosopher John Philoponus appears to have been translated into Latin in the Middle Ages. The only explicitly attributed text available to the Scholastics was a version of book II, chapters 4-9 of his commentary on the De anima, but this work seems to have had little influence on either Albert the Great or Thomas Aquinas4. In his commentary on the De Caelo, Thomas' knowledge of Philoponus derives in the first instance from William of Moerbeke's Latin translation of Simplicius' Commentary on the De Caelo (completed in 1271). Thomas' own commentary on the De Caelo contains seven references to ― Ioannes grammaticus, qui dictus est Philoponus ‖5, but the Aquinate shows no particular interest in Philoponus as a historical personage, and no knowledge of, or at least no interest in, the fact that the Philoponus in question was a Christian. As far as Thomas is concerned, Philoponus was merely an adversary of Simplicius who wrongly argued against the Aristotelian doctrine of the perpetuity a parte ante and a parte post of the heavens. Thomas is aware of Philoponus' argument, which we'll study in a few moments, that a
Comment [RT1]: Mike, I would sugges you put in here 1-2 paragraphs indicating early on some of the key reasons why / ho Philoponus is important to Aquinas for those not familiar with the connections. Th will give the reader a clear and concise understanding of what is coming and its value.
Comment [LF2]: I agree, a brief explanation on the relevance of Philoponu argumentation regarding ‘creation’ and ho these arguments were used by many Arab Jewish and Latin theologians and philosophers would be very helpful for the readers.
It has been argued, notably by Sten Ebbesen, that several fragments of Philoponus' commentary on the Posterior Analytics circulated in Latin during the Middle Ages, under the name of Alexander. See the references in G. R. Giardina (in press), 468.
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In De caelo, lib. 1, l. 6 n. 3.
3 celestial body, since it is finite in magnitude, has only finite power (virtus), and therefore cannot last forever. Thus, despite the fact that Philoponus put forth these arguments in order to argue in favor of the Christian view of creation, Thomas, following Simplicius and Averroes, rejects them. Philoponus, says Thomas (following the Neoplatonic line of argument) misinterpreted Plato's Timaeus as teaching a temporal beginning of the heavens, whereas in fact all Plato meant to point out was their dependency on a higher cause. Above all, Thomas, unlike Philoponus, believes that although the world did have a beginning, it will have no end . I.2. The Arabo-Latin tradition Philoponus' reputation in the Arabic tradition, where he was known, among other sobriquets, as John the Grammarian (Yaḥyā al-naḥwī) was a strange one. He was said to have been a Jacobite bishop of Alexandria, deposed for having abandoned his faith in the Trinity, and to have lived long enough to witness the Muslim conquest of Alexandria, under ‛Amr b. al-‛Āṣ, in 6417. Some, if not most of Philoponus' authentic works were translated into Arabic8. Three of these will interest us primarily here : the Against Proclus on the eternity of the World, which survives almost entirely in Greek9 ; the Against Aristotle, the original Greek
Comment [RT3]: It would be good to have a note here with reference to 1-2 pieces of literature on this.
In Phys., 8, lectio 21, 1147 ; Summa Theol. 1, 104a.4, ad 1 and 2. Philoponus believes the world shall be instantly destroyed when God chooses to do so, but only to prepare the way for the emergence of a better world at the Resurrection. This appears to have been the theme of the lost eighth book of his Against Aristotle : cf. the fragment recently discovered by M. Rashed (2007, 271 ff.) in the Kitāb al-minfa‘a by the 11th-century Antiochene Melchite theologian Ibn al-Fadl ‗Abdallah al-Anṭākī. Troupeau 77, Gannagé. Philoponus was even, on some accounts, indirectly responsible for the burning of the library of Alexandra (Gannagé 7). According to a plausible hypothesis, the name of John the Grammarian may have been confused in the sources with that of John of Nikiu, Jacobite bishop of Egypt in the second half of the seventh century. It remains unclear exactly how many. Graf, writing in 1944, affirmed that ― Neben einen kleinen Auswahl seiner philosophischen Schriften wurde nur sein polemische Werk gegen die Lehre des Proklus von der Ewigkeit der Welt in arabischer Uebersetzung bekannt und benutzt ‖ (GCAL I, 417). Contrast this claim with that of E. Gannagé, who affirms that Philoponus' philosophical works, ― citées avec parcimonie, ont pourtant été quasiment toutes traduites ‖. The first four books of Philoponus' commentary on the Physics were translated by Qusṭā b. Lūqā, while the translation of the last four books was attributed to the Syrian Christian ‗Abd al-Masīḥ ibn Nā‗ima al-Ḥimṣī, the translator of the Theology of Aristotle (P. Fenton 1986, 242). Although now lost, these translations were influential on the scholia accompanying Isḥāq ibn Ḥunain's translation of the Physics, preserved in the ms. Leiden Or. 583 ; cf. A. Hasnawi 1994, and the dissertation by E. Giannakis, Philoponus in the Arabic Tradition of Aristotle’s Physics, University of Oxford 1992. Except for Proclus' opening argument, missing in the only extant Greek manuscript, but which survives in at least two Arabic translations. One, preserved in two Istanbul manuscripts stemming from the circle of Al9 8 7
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195v-109v. 10 Sorabji 1988. English (U. In any given case. S. p. 254. Neoplatonici apud Arabes. 17 . containing nine arguments.).K. Badawi. who had not read the latter work — and he is likely to have done the same in the De contingentia mundi. English (U. Some version of Philoponus' arguments seems to have been refuted by Avicenna in his treatise ― concerning that which has been established according to him with regard to the proofs of those who affirm that the past has a temporal beginning and to their being resolved into syllogisms ‖14. contains eight of Proclus' eighteen arguments and seems to have been used by al-Šahrastānī in his Kitāb al-milal wa-l-niḥal. it is hard to tell exactly what work by Philoponus a given particular argument comes from. preserved inter alia in ms. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. cf. Badawi. and in Vatican ms.). Not Superscript/ Subscript . Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 114 Sachau) . 162 . 30a-32b . This last work is probably the one refuted by Simplicius near the end of his massive commentary on the Physics11.). p. Pines suggests that the extant summaries may represent translations of the kephalaia. For translations of Proclus' opening argument. Neoplatonici apud arabes. English (U. S. Not Superscript/ Subscript Simplicius. fol. AlQifṭī possessed an Arabic translation of at least part of Philoponus' Against Proclus. sometimes in abbreviated form. 240 of the Hunt Collection of the Bodleian Library.K. cf. G. Petersburg 1869). 27. II. 34 Diels. 347 ff.K. 33-42). and McGinnis. In Phys.K. and an Arabic translation of a summary12 of it survives in at least two manuscripts. was carried out by Isḥāq ibn Ḥunain (ed. while the other. Proclus' 18 arguments in favor of the eternity of the word ― were translated into Arabic several times and independently of Philoponus' refutation of them ‖. G. that are often inserted at the beginning of Greek manuscripts.S. AI-Farabi (St. Kitāb Yaḥyā al-Naḥwī fī-l-dalāla ‘alā ḥadūṯ al-‘ālam. M. pp.. 111 . text no. the Book on the proof of the contingency of the world. Or. 11 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. I. K. cf. while al-Bīrūnī cites it several times in his Taḥqīq mā li-l-Hind (p.). disciple of Yaḥyā ibn ‗Adī in 10th-century Baghdad13. 17-18. and translated by B. preserved in ms. ― Treatise on the fact that the proof of John the Grammarian of the contingency of the world is more acceptable than that of the theologians ‖. cf.4 text of which survives only in fragments preserved mainly by Simplicius10. Endress 1973. English (U. 1025-1032 Badrān (Cairo 1947-1955) . ed. Pines 1972.). 259 . 1326. Philoponus' arguments Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Adamson. Steinschneider. G. In his Contra Aristotelem he often repeats. A.).1336. 15-17 .K. and. arguments he had already set forth in the Contra Proclum — a procedure that frustrates Simplicius. for al-Qifṭī and Ibn Abī Uṣaybi‗a. English (U. 38 . Risāla lahu al-ra’īs Abī ‘Alī Ibn Sīnā fī mā taqarrara ‘indahu fī ḥujaj al-muṯbitīn li’-l-maḍī mabda’an zamāniyyan wa-taḥlīlihā ila-l-qiyāsāt. For Arabic translations cf. summaries or subject-headings. 244-248. 23). Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Pines 1972 . Ibn al-Nadīm. 14 13 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Troupeau 1984. fol. British Museum Add. Cairo 1955. 91 . 220224. English (U. Highlight Kindī. p. al-Fihrist (Leipzig 1871). Endress 1973. 7473. Hasnawi 1994. D'Ancona 2003. It was commented on by the Christian philosopher Ibn Suwār. According to Anawati (1956. Cf. and what is likely to have been a third separate work. Arabo 103. p. Lewin 1954. Anawati 1956 (French).
Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 415 . 402-403 . Roughly speaking. Philoponus' second set of proofs as identified by Davidson. The standard answer to this objection. A. study and translation M. Cf.). so that the objection fails19.K.K. the chain of events leading to the occurrence of a particular elemental change or to Socrates' coming into being cannot be infinite. Not Superscript/ Subscript . Averroes. a quantity that is infinite in act can never be traversed. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Aristotle had used this principle in Physics VIII. the world has not existed forever. 10 to argue for the necessity of an incorporeal Prime Mover : if the heavens are to move for an infinite time. English (U. M.K. and in favor of its having been created. as set forth in the De Caelo.). Lettinck 1994. known to Kindī15.). Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. . 18 19 20 17 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. was based on the principle that a finite body can contain only finite power. Wolfson 1976. Davidson 1987. whether we're talking about the transformations of one element into another (as discussed by Aristotle in the De generatione et corruptione). But if the world had existed forever. 244 ff.K. Mahdi 1967. English (U. such causal chains would have been infinite. or the coming into being of an individual like Socrates. as 15 16 Cf. Mahdi 1967 . One. The other.). 658-659 . 74. 76 ff. Fārābī argued against the first five books of the Contra Aristotelem. M. Mahdi 1972. . Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Sijistānī. English (U. Fārābī seems to have dealt with Philoponus in several of his works. 107 ff. in which Philoponus attempts to refute Aristotle's doctrines of the fifth body and lack of a contrary to circular motion.K. English (U. A. it cannot have an infinite number of prerequisites17. Davidson 1987. Philoponus argued.K. Glasner 2009. as had been known since Zeno. Davidson 1987. Arabic text ed. H. it was created18. English (U. Not Superscript/ Subscript Cf.). the first argument boils down to the principle that in order for an entity to exist. I. Ibn Suwar and. was that an infinite series is objectionable only if its members exist simultaneously and are ordered. But neither infinite past time nor an infinite number of past ancestors meets these conditions. cf. but its existence had a beginning in time : that is. known to Ibn ‗Adī. M. ch. It appears to have been in his lost work On Changing Beings (Fī al-mawjūdāt al-mutaġayyira) that Fārābī tackled the sixth book of Philoponus' Against Aristotle. devoted to arguments against Aristotle's proofs of the eternity of the world . pioneered by al-Fārābī in his lost work On Changing Beings and adopted by Avicenna. Rashed 2008. Davidson 1987. He breaks them down into two main headings. Maimonides.5 Herbert Davidson has given an elegant account of the structure of Philoponus' arguments against the perpetuity of the world. since. notably in his al-radd ‘alā Yaḥyā alnaḥwī (Against John the Grammarian). 428 ff. Here. Fārābī16. English (U. 130 ff. Therefore. was based on the impossibility of an actually infinite number. was based on the axiom that a finite body can contain only finite power20. 127 ff. Thus. once again. Avicenna and Averroes.). destined for a long and influential career in medieval thought. Cf. Guide.
Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.238 D'Ancona et al. 69 ff. but also its perpetual existence : in Aristotelian terms. Rashed 2008. 21. and Averroes26. I. I. A. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Martini Bonadeo. but so does Philoponus. (following M. The Arabic summary constituting the first section of the De contingentia mundi opens with what may well be Philoponus' ipsissima verba : It is impossible that the world should be eternal a parte ante (azaliyyan) and it is obligatory that it should be created in time (muḥdaṯan) and have come into existence after not having existed. .K. In the fifth century. the author of the Harmony between Plato and Aristotle24 (who was probably not Fārābī. Not Superscript/ Subscript In Phys. R. Proclus (412-485)21 used this principle to infer that the world requires an incorporeal cause not just to ensure its perpetual motion. 27.K. C. and preserve. who seems to have postulated ― the notion of a ‗divine power‘ originating in the heavenly bodies. 1362-3 Diels. which he held to bring about. adventitious or acquired after the fact. Hyman. let's retain as the key element of Proclus' argument that the world derives the eternity both of its motion and of its being from elsewhere : the world's perpetuity.. Davidson 1987. This notion may well go back to Alexander of Aphrodisias. Steel 1987. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. English (U. Harmony. Proclus. 13 f. p. English (U. God is not merely the final cause of the motion of the heavenly bodies. 63. therefore the Prime Mover must be incorporeal. De substantia orbis. or cause of their existence as well. 1. 2-6. But no finite body can contain infinite power .). Proclus' student Ammonius (ca. . 15 ff.3 Badawi = p. I believe. Cf. throughout its perpetual existence. Theology of Aristotle. 25 26 Guide.K. p. p. as Proclus puts it using a phrase from Plato's Statesman. 237. 7-28.). 268. . 22 23 24 21 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 48 ff. 2.).6 Aristotle believes.K. English (U. they must be moved by an infinite power. p. 37). 440-520) wrote a treatise to prove that God is both the efficient and final cause of the world. The world. form and order in the sublunar realm ‖ (Freudenthal 2006. 2009). 281 ff. Sorabji 1988. 251 ff. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.). . is episkeuastê. the Theology of Aristotle23. Maimonides25. In Tim.).K. a viewpoint that was later to be adapted by Simplicius22. but their efficient cause. For the moment. English (U. English (U. but generated because God continuously grants it being. English (U. 7 . Croese 1998.). instantaneous nature of divine creation. is both perpetual (aidios) and generated (genêtos) : perpetual because it had no temporal beginning and will have no end. The Theology and the pseudo-Fārābī both emphasize the extratemporal.K. in quantities small enough for it to accept. as Aristotle had argued. Proclus concludes.
).. iv. p. 5 ff.K. 1326. 283a24-29) already notes that anything destructible must eventually be destroyed. 26-1359.K. But Aristotle (De Cael. arguing that the world has a nature that is suitable for receiving its perpetuity from elsewhere. 235.7 To prove this affirmation. This much seems clear. 1326. 27 28 De conting. 32 Simplicius holds (In Phys. See R. 15 ff..). where he infers from the fact that something is perishable (phtharton) that it will perish later (dêlon hôs husteron phtharêsetai). 2225 . every possibility must eventually be realized31. 1358. Philoponus does not hesitate to attribute this principle to Plato as well . citing Philoponus. 1170. p.. Cf. English (U. some controversy among modern interpreters over whether Philoponus' proof that the world is susceptible of generation and destruction suffices to prove that the world actually was generated and actually will be destroyed. English (U. that is. 257. 142. 29. Someone might object (as Proclus did). 31 A principle that seems to have been conceded by Simplicius. 361.K. 4. one of then will cause motion. 233-242 Rabe.). De aet. In Phys.. English (U. Simpl. again. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.).K. 282a22-25 . In Phys.38-1336. and the other will be moved . in a fragment from his lost Commentary on the Physics (preserved by Simplicius. for this is what it is to be capable (dunaton) : that which would occur if what is said to be capable (dunasthai) did not perish first ‖. Now. 282b5-283a4. 31 f. De Caelo I). Diels. that the world's perpetual existence might be bestowed upon it by the infinite power of God. Such an extrinsic cause would not change the fact that the world is perishable by nature30 . Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. English (U. cf. English (U.. and cf. ii. Simplicius (In de Cael.) that Aristotle proves the reciprocal entailments (i) x is generable iff x is perishable.K. cf. it bears within it the logos of destructibility and is therefore genêtos. Contra Arist. 1171. Therefore. Therefore. But iv. English (U. 38-1336.) argues that ― If they [sc. Davidson has argued that Philoponus needs two additional premises to make this step : 1. what causes motion and what is movable] are imperishable.). p. In Phys. it must be generated32.. who. and (ii) x is ungenerated iff x is imperishable in Book I of the De Caelo . iii. If something is destructible. In Phys. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. There is. Rabe. if one is motive and the other movable for infinite time. In the course of infinite time.. fr. p. 24 . Sorabji 1988. it cannot contain infinite power (Aristotle. Physics VIII28). 10-15 Heiberg).). De aet. mundi. 4 ff. 1170. In de Cael. 80 Wildberg = Simpl. The body of the universe is finite (Aristotle. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Not Superscript/ Subscript . 30 29 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.. Alexander of Aphrodisias. mundi ap. 34 . mundi VI. however. in order to construct the following proof : i. denies this. Simpl.K. and 2. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.. Philoponus27 took Proclus' argument and gave it a decisive twist. the world was created in time and came into existence after not having existed29.
. This scarcity contrasts with the situation in Averroes. from the epitome of the Physics. with a few exceptions33. English (U.K.. 1997. This.. who confronts the views of Ioannes or Yaḥyā al-naḥwī on numerous occasions34. 345 I. 232. vol.K. English (U. 310).).8 Whatever its precise structure and persuasive force may be. dating from 1159 (Puig 1990. and confined.K. Averroes attributes the view that there is a first motion to ― Plato and the other members of the Kalām ‖.).K. 69 ff. Thomas Aquinas (In Phys. 1131. Puig 1990. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Averroes concludes. Long In Phys.. In our Text 1. Thomas' De natura loci (Opuscule 51. A selection of the fragments in which Averroes mentions Philoponus is given (with no claim to exhaustivenessvity) in the Appendix. Paris 1858. Glasner (2009) has called the ― succession argument ‖ . especially Puig Montada (1990. § 6. Philoponus and Averroes We have seen that nominal fragments of Philoponus are rare in Thomas Aquinas. lib. lec. English (U. 1999a. 207 .). English (U. to the commentary on the De Caelo. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. who attempted to refute Aristotle on precisely this point. Averroes.).K. not just the motion of the heavens.). Not Superscript/ Subscript . p. 986) maintains that Aristotle means to speak about all motion. Avicenna and Ibn Bājja thought that at Physics 8.K.quod apparuit mihi post longam perscrutationem. 368 ff. 1999b) and Glasner (2009). 2 n. English (U. Aristotle cites his definition of motion in order to demonstrate that there is another motion prior to whatever motion one may choose35. but to show that the motion of the first sphere is prior to all individual motions37.). 5. Philoponus' version of the argument from infinite power was destined for a long and influential future in medieval Arabic and Latin thought. Averroes himself initially accepted this interpretation.) mentions the views of Johannes Grammaticus. He goes on to say that Fārābī. 9ff. but after thinking the matter over long and hard36 he came to believe Aristotle's goal was not to prove that motion is eternal as a genus. this passage reflections a paradigmatic state of affairs in Averroes' intellectual development. 1999 b. Averroes initially38 accepts a position – in this case.5 ( = our Latin text 9). cf.1. As has been shown by a number of recent scholars. p. 1. English (U. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. was also the view of Philoponus. This was already the view of Simplicius . and some sections of the Long Commentary. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 35 36 37 34 33 This is what R. 8. 38 In the first version of the Epitome on Physics. In Phys. . the Closely following Averroes' commentary on Physics 4. cf.. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. III. 251a6 ff.2.
Philoponus. Themistius. 188-9 Bouygues). and so is more or less equivalent to matter. is that infinite motions in the world are infinite in genus only because of the one single continuous eternal movement of the body of the heavens41.S. according to which Aristotle is talking not about motion per se. Lexique de la langue philosophique d'Ibn Sīnā (Paris 1938). defended among others by Simplicius39.e. other parts of the Long Commentary. who is merely an efficient cause of motion. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. which he attributes to Plato. R. it is implied. p.K. Averroes rejects this position. is eternal or generated in time. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.). makes an interesting distinction among those who believe that there is both an efficient cause and that processes of coming-into-being actually occur (Table 1). First there are those who affirm the latent (ahl alkumūn) — that is. so that the claim that ― there is no possibility except in the agent ‖ amounts to the claim that God created matter. says Averroes. the heaven). Goichon.). English (U. English (U.. Our Text 2. no. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. and. Aristotle himself. 382.). those who maintain creation and invention emergence (ahl al-ibdā‘ wa-liḫtirā‘) hold that the agent creates the entire world without any need for preexistent matter. is caused by the Prime Mover. In contrast. Our passage ends with the report from Fārābī's On Changing Beings that Philoponus claimed ― there is no possibility except in the agent ‖ : I assume that ― possibility ‖ (Arabic imkān) here renders the Greek to dunaton or hê dunamis42. the first of whom. Averroes' final view. This. but investigating whether the first motion of the first mobile (i. Cf. is that of initiating this process of emergence. English (U. On this view. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. by way of Fārābī's On Changing Beings. is the view of both Christian and Muslim mutakallimūn. the only function of the agent. Highlight 39 40 Puig 1999a. from Averroes' Long Commentary on Metaph. . Fārābī. 41 42 Cf. was Philoponus. the views of Avicenna. includes.K. dating from about 1195. that all things pre-exist in all things. This school of thought. 75 ff. with variations.). In the second version of the Epitome. 670. Glasner 2009. that Aristotle's goal in Physics 8. 1.9 straightforward interpretation. perhaps edited first in 1186 (Puig 1990) and the Physical Questions.). Later on40. and that nothing comes from nothing. 156. Avicenna. according to Averroes.1.K. probably as quoted by Ibn Bājja. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. which holds that coming-into-being is substantial change. English (U. Ibn Bājja and the mutakallimūn. and that coming-into-being is merely the emergence of what already exists in a state of latency. English (U. Lambda.K. Fārābī. as expressed in the Tahāfut (p. is to show that motion is eternal because every motion one may wish to choose is preceded and followed by another motion – which he seems to have derived immediately ultimately from Philoponus. and substitutes for it his own view.
Aristotle argues that something is generated iff it is perishable. one presumes. Text 4a. ἀζάλαηνη κὲλ νὐθ ἐζηὲ νὐδ‘ ἄιπηνη ηὸ πάκπαλ. At any rate.). It will therefore be corruptible per se. and therefore. Indeed. 44 43 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. why couldn't it acquire power sufficient to allow it to last forever from some external. is absurd. 15-20.K. said Proclus. which we'll see again shortly below (Text 5). from the Long Commentary on the De Caelo. when the Demiurge informs the lesser gods (i. Lambda. In Phys. because it is finite. The heaven.e. will be corrupted or destroyed at some point in time. the planets) that although they are not inherently immortal. If every body has finite power. from the De substantia orbis. Plato. Averroes then reports Philoponus' response to the objection by Proclus noted shortly above : even if a finite body.. is finite and therefore has finite power. from the Middle commentary on the De Caelo : all that is eternal and corruptible contains a potential for destruction. νὔηη κὲλ δὴ ιπζήζεζζέ γε νὐδὲ ηεύμεζζε ζαλάηνπ κνίξαο. Simplicius.K. but apparently that of Plato himself at Timaeus 41 a-d. but incorruptible owing to the infinite power it receives from its motive cause. as a body. Here we encounter the attribution of this view to Alexander and to Avicenna. also from the Long Commentary on Metaph. is not only Proclus' view.). ηῆο ἐκῆο βνπιήζεωο κείδνλνο ἔηη δεζκνῦ θαὶ θπξηωηέξνπ ιαρόληεο ἐθείλωλ νἷο ὅη‘ ἐγίγλεζζε ζπλεδεῖζζε. presents the same variation on the argument from finite power : if the heaven is of finite extent and therefore power. must have limited power and therefore be destructible. it will be corruptible with regard to its finite power but incorruptible with regard to its infinite power. Not Superscript/ Subscript Cf. is excluded by Aristotle in the last chapters of Book I of the De Caelo. Our Text 4. provides another testimony to this argument. presumably. infinite and eternal source ? This of course. But what's finite is corruptible.10 Text 3. contains a statement of Philoponus' objection from finite power. and imperishable iff it is ungenerated44. 1171. even Simplicius agrees that here. English (U. and this. Another version of these arguments appears in our Text 3a. they will in fact never be destroyed because the will of the Demiurge will always maintain them in existence43. . then the heaven has finite power. which amounts to maintaining that something generated (Greek genêton) can nevertheless be aphtharton or imperishable. English (U. and the heaven is a body. Timaeus 41b : δη‘ ἃ θαὶ ἐπείπεξ γεγέλεζζε. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Philoponus apparently argued that this view. We'll see shortly that a similar view was also attributed to Alexander of Aphrodisias.
H. ― in some of his treatises ‖. or a mixture of both. and H. but at the time of creation was invested with order. that Avicenna came up with his idea of two kinds of necessity : necessary per se. among others. A. Given that every body has finite power. like the celestial movers. claims that the celestial body obtains its eternity from its immaterial mover46.K.). Not Superscript/ Subscript On this division. Averroes. Davidson 1987. Yet this implies that there will be something corruptible that is never actually corrupted : such. nothing contingent per se can acquire necessity from 45 Cf. 66) suggests one of Alexander's works referred to by Averroes may be On the motions of the spheres.). Roma : Ed. was Plato's opinion. Cf. comm. 1955. 71 . but leaves open the question of whether the ―Alexandrian‖ texts that influenced Averroes were all genuine. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Thomas Aquinas. who raised the most difficult puzzle of all against the Peripatetics. 259.K. and it was on this basis.K. This supposition seems more likely than Sorabji's supposition that Averroes has simply confused Alexander with Proclus. 46 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. as we have seen. English (U. It is from this view that Avicenna has inferred that the celestial sphere is composed of matter and form and is corruptible and possible by its own nature. like the heaven itself48. 74. Anneliese Maier. p. Consequently by their own nature the heavens are corruptible just as they were generated. II.11 Our Text 5 is taken from Averroes' commentary on Physics VIII. English (U. but we have seen above that some passages from On the Principles of the Whole can also be interpreted in a similar sense. p. and it is God who implants in them eternity. we can go over it here fairly quickly. It was John the Grammarian. De Caelo. 1987). then the celestial body is corruptible. Averroes goes on to state that Alexander. 4. 266a27 ff. 3. all apocryphal. Averroes asks. but Aristotle showed at the end of book One of the De Caelo that nothing with the potential of corruptibility can be eternal47. 321 n.). 10. who seems to understand ‗ necessary ‘ here as tantamount to ‗ eternal ‘. According to him. as is written in the Timaeus. Averroes. 48 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 126. translation Wolfson. but necessary and eternal by virtue of its cause ‖. English (U. Lectio 29. and Averroes' (mis-)understanding of it. De Caelo et Mundo. cf. and contingent per se but necessary ex alio.).K. Davidson (1969. opining that the world is generable and corruptible. will have none of this. A. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. along with the views of Alexander. Cf. Studien zur Naturphilosophie der Spätscholastik . the outermost sphere — or not ? If it does. di Storia e letteratura. Richard Sorabji (date?1988. Aristotle had shown in book Two of the De Caelo that the heaven has finite power. but this would not hold true of infinite power in an incorporeal agent. Not Superscript/ Subscript . Metaphysische Hintergründe der spätscholastischen Naturphilosophie. Abranavel. Averroes continues. Crescas. p. Long Commentary on the De Caelo. Now Aristotle has proved that the presence infinite power in a body would entail the absurd consequence of instantaneous motion45 . Mif‘alot Elohim 2. 1990b). English (U. 47 Aristotle. does this apply to the celestial body — that is. Since it has been discussed at length by Carlos Steel (1987). 682 : ― Plato says that the heavens were generated from that eternal matter which had been in a state of disorderly motion for an infinite time. 283a24ff. 318 f. 597 . Davidson (1987.
since it is divisible as a result of its presence in the body. 1. Our Text 7 is a rather difficult text from the long commentary on the Physics. is to be found in elementary bodies as different as air and fire. Philoponus denied this. once again probably following Fārābī in his On Changing Beings. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. is based once again on a report from Fārābī. Averroes rejects this argument. in so far as it exists potentially ‖)49 in order to prove that there cannot be motion without the previous existence of things that are capable of such motion.. such as the four sublunary elements. but it is moved by its form : it contains no material form at all. and. motion downwards. he argues that the heavens' passive power. envisages two ways in which the object in motion (Latin motum = Greek kinêton) is prior to motion (Latin motus = Greek kinêsis) (see Table 2). Its form cannot subsist on its own. As we have seen in the context of our Text 1. ᾗ ηνηνῦηνλ. but is simple. although this time the title of the Fārābian work is not specified. 2. Averroes. For Averroes. The Fārābian work from which this text is excerpted is likely to have been the Refutation of John the Grammarian. their power to receive motion. is to be found in the different elementary bodies earth and water. alleging that since motions are defined by their points of arrival. if two motions had the same points of arrival they would be the same motion. for example. from the Long Commentary on the De Caelo. as asserted by Aristotle (cf. According to Fārābī. an argument that formed one of the pillars of Aristotle's proof of the eternity of the world. characteristic of two of the four 49 Physics. Ibn Bājja. Not Superscript/ Subscript . which I have called Mode One. possess their natural motion as soon as they come into existence. In the first scenario. adopted by Simplicius. the Stagirite had cited his definition of motion from Physics 3 (― the actuality of what exists potentially.). Philoponus produced the counter-argument that one kind of motion. is finite. Philoponus sought to deny the one-to-one correspondence between elementary motions and elementary bodies. Instead. An enmattered form has neither infinite passion nor infinite action. 1. citing as a counter-example the fact that some things. motion upwards. viz. Averroes himself. for this would entail a contradiction. that is.). while one another kind of motion. Fārābī. the celestial body is not made up of form and matter. θίλεζίο ἐζηηλ. 269a8 ff. De Caelo I.K. so that fire's motion. following Fārābī. English (U. 3.12 something else. according to the standard interpretation. Text 6. would be indistinguishable from the motion of air. at least initially. In our passage. 201a9 : ἡ ηνῦ δπλάκεη ὄληνο ἐληειέρεηα. It reflects Philoponus' arguments against Aristotle's doctrine in Physics 8.
according to Aristotle. here the object has begun its motion and is progressing toward its goal. it immediately possesses a part of that ubi51. where the wood is potentially fire (which is its actuality). Here. In other words.) Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. the motum that is still potential is of a different kind from the motum in which the motion is (in quo est ipse motus). Averroes continues. it immediately possesses an ubi. wood. In the case of the motion whose goal is generation or destruction. when an individual part of fire is generated. which remains self-identical when exercising its dunamis of motion upward. which is already exercising in act its potential for upward motion. which is upward secundum totum. Likewise. Not Italic. 1997. I believe50.K. must exist prior to that motion – does not inhere in the fire in act. the motum containing potentiality might be.S. deceiving himself and others. but has not yet reached it and therefore retains its potentiality. by contrast.). Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. In the case of the translational motion of the elements. In the second mode by which the motum is prior to motus. in contrast. it immediately occupies a portion of the highest region of the sublunar sphere. the second kind of entelechy (Entelechy2) refers to what has achieved its completed or perfected form. a place or direction of its motion. corresponds to the present tense (kineitai) : ― it is in the process of moving ‖ . 1999a-b). However. Entelechy1. of the double entelechy (Table 3). that is. that there is a potentiality The initial merit of this discovery belongs to Puig (date?). and here Averroes adduces the case of the element fire as an example. Averroes continues. developed by the Peripatetic and Neoplatonic commentators of Aristotle. the potentiality for that motion – which. The distinction alluded to so obliquely here is. the subiectum is also the body out of which the generation takes place. English (U.13 traditional kinds of motion (generation/corruption and translation). based on the doctrine. When fire is generated as a whole. which is characterized by a potentiality (potentia = Greek dunamis) temporally preceding that motion. but has not reached it yet. the motum might be fire. for instance. Averroes gives no illustration. 51 When an individual fire comes into being. Here. and this explains how he could maintain. was the point of which Philoponus was ignorant. who has discussed Simplicius' distinction between two types of mobile in several important publications (1990. English (U.).K. the subiectum (= Greek hupokeimenon) is that out of which the generation/destruction takes place. but in the subject out of which the fire is generated. such as oil. Not Superscript/ Subscript . 50 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. might correspond to fire. the motum in potential is numerically identical with the motum in act. having cast off all potentiality : it corresponds to the perfective aspect kekinêtai ― it has moved (and completed its motion) ‖. English (U. This. which is its form. The motum in quo est motus. and in that sense still retains its potentiality.
as preserved in Simplicius' commentary on Physics 8. contrary to Aristotle. that some motions occur without the preliminary existence of any capacity or potential for motion. and when water is formed in clouds it instantly tends to move downward. Some additional light can be shed on this passage by our Text 8. Philoponus seems to be answering the objection (hôsper enstasin luôn) that wood. Physics. 251a9-10 : ἀλαγθαῖνλ ἄξα ὑπάξρεηλ ηὰ πξάγκαηα ηὰ δυνάμενα κινεῖζθαι θαζ‘ ἑθάζηελ θίλεζηλ. that the potentiality for upward motion is immediately united with the form of fire in act. 20-1138. 1.K.K. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. If we omit such cases of forced or counter-natural motion. 109 Wildberg. Here we see once again that Philoponus' point. but in their case. it instantly receives the property of upward locomotion (tên epi to anô phoran). but the change from wood to fire is generation. 1133. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. claiming. English (U. preexists fire's upward motion. probably in the same argument we have just examined (Text 7). I think we must have recourse to Philoponus' Contra Aristotelem.). Aristotle's definition (― the entelechy of the movable qua movable ‖) concerns motion. First. 53 Cf. Such things are movable (kinêta) and capable of being moved (dunamena kineisthai)53. this capacity or potentiality (potentia = Greek dunamis) inheres not in the movable object itself. for instance. which is potentially fire. was to maintain. Perhaps what Philoponus has in mind here is a case in which fire is impeded from moving upward by some obstacle : only then does a potential for upward motion that is prior to its actual upward motion actually reside within fire. does not inhere in place (loco. motion is not preexisted by realities that are have a merely potential existence (ou prouparkhei tês kinêseôs ta pragmata dunamei monon onta).14 (Greek dunamis) existing simultaneously with that of which it is the potentiality. Simplicius tells us.). Aristotle. for instance. Next. 8. In order to improve our understanding of these two obscure fragments. so that Aristotle's doctrine that what is movable must preexist motion would be saved. from the Long Commentary on the De Caelo. 152. If fire comes into existence in some low-lying place. Philoponus has a couple of ripostes against this view. In fr. It 52 P. Fire's potential for motion. Not Superscript/ Subscript . not (local) motion : wood does not possess upward motion until it perishes and is transformed into fire. but in that out of which the thing in motion comes to be. 11 Diels. unless it is impeded (ei mê ti kôlusei). English (U. but in the oil or fire out of which the fire comes into being. an recte? exspectaveris igne). Philoponus sets forth his argument that some things acquire their natural motion as soon as they come into being. A preceding capacity for motion in is present in the object in motion (motum) only in a forced or counter-natural way (violente).
On the one hand. such as wood. not the elements of which he is made up. Simplicius goes on to report additional arguments set forth by the man he contemptuously calls ― the Grammarian ‖. but they do when A = fire. p. it is false that what is potentially movable temporally preexists motion in act.. but upward motion is nevertheless not the actualization of wood's potentiality. arguing that if upward motion were the entelechy of wood. but that fire itself is capable of being moved. If m = motion upward. If we . The other variety of what is capable of motion — we'll call it dunamis1 — is what tends toward but does not yet possess such perfect capacity.) is to invoke the concept of the twofold nature of what is capable of being moved (to dunamenon kineisthai). Motion is thus the entelechy of the proximate capacity. which are contraries. although Simplicius denies that this is a crucial element in Aristotle's proof of the eternity of the world. It follows that what is potentially movable upwards (to dunamei kinêton) is not wood but fire. Philoponus lays down (Table 4) that for object A to be described as potentially movable (kinêton) by motion m.15 is true that generation does not take place without motion. 2. Summing up his reasons for denying that the potential for fire's upward motion is previously existent in wood. would wind up with two contrary entelechies : downward motion qua wood. Therefore. It must be exclusively through A's nature that A is movable by motion m . in the sense that what is capable of walking (badistikon) is man. always accompanied by actuality. But his main response (In Phys. the following conditions must hold : 1. would have the same entelechy. A must be proximately movable by motion m . Wood. there is that which has the perfect capacity — let's call it dunamis2 — that projects activity (to tên teleian ekhon dunamin tên problêtikên tês energeias) : for instance. 1 ff. that fire has for moving upward. Increasingly exasperated with Philoponus' stupidity. then fire and wood. then these conditions do not hold when A = wood. Simplicius pounces on the point that Philoponus admits that things like fire and water are preceded by their generation. so that in this sense every motion is indeed preceded by another motion. moreover. the capacity. A must not perish as a result of motion m. and 3. When he sets about refuting these arguments. who considers he has proved that what is capable of being moved (to dunamenon kineisthai) is not what preexists. But fire moves upward as soon as it comes into existence. and upward motion qua fire. 1136. Philoponus now proceeds by reduction.
K. and therefore ought not to move. according to Averroes. Not Superscript/ Subscript . where Aristotle affirms that all the celestial spheres move in place55. which caused embarrassment to his commentators. said the heaven is in place by accident. see R.K. 4. he is referring to dunamis1. faced with two alternatives : either affirming that there is a motion that does not occur in a place. 5. It therefore ought not to be in place. that which tends to actualize its potentiality but has not yet fully done so. Glasner 2009. viz. i. we are told. or accepting the existence of the void. for his part. This citation. opted for the latter alternative. I believe this argumentation sheds at least some light on Averroes' text. but is simultaneous therewith. and that wood has upward motion potentially (dunamei). and that space is an interval. Thus. We are thus. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. to deny that the outermost sphere is in place seems to contradict the De Caelo (I. corresponding to Philoponus In Phys. according to Simplicius. English (U. 23 ff. occurs in the context of the discussion of whether the celestial body or the outermost sphere is or is not in place. (Corollarium de loco. Philoponus thinks he can refute Aristotle by showing that in the case of fire and water.). English (U.K. Philoponus. yet he held the void was inseparable from bodies56. Philoponus stupidly tries to refutes him by proving that dunamis2 does not preexist motion. CAG 17. 95. M. Aristotle54 had declared that what has nothing outside of it cannot be in a place. our Text 9. 54 55 56 Physics. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.16 compare with our Table 3. He fails to understand that fire has the capacity for upward motion in the sense of dunamis2. Rashed 2007. whereas wood has it in the sense of dunamis1. insofar as it tends to become fire. it has nothing outside it. while fire has it in act (kat' energeian). and hence on Thomas Aquinas' adaptations of it. English (U. Finally.e. 2). when Aristotle says that what is capable of being moved preexists motion. 568-569). carrying out one revolution every 24 hours. What is more. Aristotle. motion co-exists with what is capable of being moved according to dunamis2. suggests that Averroes had at least partial access to the Arabic translation of Philoponus' commentary on the Physics. In other words.). again from the long commentary on the Physics. Ignorant of this distinction.). we can see at a glance that the doctrine of the twofold dunamis is. 212a231-32. the revers de la medaille of the theory of the twofold entelechy. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. For additional instances. whereas Aristotle's point was to argue that dunamis1 must preexist motion. as it were. But the eighth and outermost celestial sphere is not contained. Yet it clearly does move.
and/or because all of its parts except the last one (the outermost sphere) are in place. was not without its difficulties. this is not the case for spherical bodies. says Averroes. like several other of the texts we've examined (1. This view of Ibn Bājja. rather than accidentally or by virtue of its parts. is thus external. a work which. The place of a rectilinear body. but only by parts. The latter have as their place the surface of the body they revolve around. Half of these texts specify that the Fārābian work in question was the On Changing Beings. Themistius' solution. The outer sphere is also in place if one considers what it contains. is in fact the view of Fārābī. Although Steinschneider classified our text as a possible testimony to a commentary by Fārābī on the Physics. In addition. Averroes goes on to report the ancient debate over whether the heaven is in a place accidentally or by virtue of its parts. will therefore not hold water. who adopted the stance of contradicting the aporiai of Johannes <Philoponus>. First. seems to have been devoted to refuting the arguments against the eternity of the world set forth by Philoponus is his Contra Aristotelem. Aristotle himself states in Physics VI that the sphere moves as a whole (in which case its change of place is only according to form) and by its parts (in which case its change of place is according to form and substrate).17 Themistius attempted to solve the difficulty by claiming that the heaven is in place by virtue of its parts. where by ― parts ‖ he understood the celestial spheres contained by the outermost sphere. because the sphere does not move as a whole. while the place of a spherical body. He then quotes the view of Ibn Bājja : Although bodies that move in a straight line are in a place only if they are contained externally by another body. one of the works in which the Second Master posuit se contradicentem quaestionibus Ioannis. not as a whole. albeit from within. by virtue of the parts in its concavity. Following Themistius. Themistius' explanation that the sphere is not in place in a simple or absolute sense. as Marwan Rashed has shown. which is terminated by a round body. in Fārābī's On Changing beings. and this latter. 6. It is therefore better to say that the entire celestial body is in place. Each of these spheres moves around the convex or external surface of the sphere it surrounds. All bodies are therefore in place simply and essentially. is internal. This lengthy and difficult text calls for a few remarks. 7) we note the mention of the name of Fārābī. Averroes concludes. . which terminates in itself and is perfect in that it admits of no increase or diminution. too. It is not clear how something can be at rest if all its parts are motion. inner sphere can therefore be said to ― contain ‖ the sphere that surrounds it. it seems more likely that Averroes read this testimony. 2.
First suggested by Galen. This. but rules out this possibility on the grounds that Averroes never cites such a commentary57. As has been well pointed out by previous scholars (Puig. which is essentially in place. who so often follows the great Cordoban. a view in which he may not have been too far off the mark. One may feel that this amounts to sidestepping the question. Conclusion The goal of this survey. This is perhaps not terribly surprising : one would not expect Averroes. the research of Marwan Rashed has carefully traced the history of the solution according to which the sphere of fixed stars is ― in ‖ the sphere of Saturn. if one Rashed's own explanation is that the Simplicius-Averroes explanation is in fact correct. 131) briefly considers the hypothesis that this convergence may be explained by common recourse to the commentary on the Physics by Porphyry. necessarily incomplete. seules les « erreurs » sont signifiantes ‖.). therefore ― contained ‖ by it. with the result that the convex or external surface of the sphere of Saturn is the ― place ‖ of the sphere of fixed stars. Not Superscript/ Subscript .18 Second. or only through the intermediary of Ibn Bājja. For Simplicius. Glasner). heaven is in place in the sense that it surrounds the center of the universe. he regards Philoponus as the originator of mistaken views on the finitude and created nature of the cosmos. English (U. I think. has been to emphasize once again the importance of the thought of John Philoponus for the understanding of the physical and cosmological doctrines of Averroes.K. as Rashed remarks. 57 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. and later picked up by Themistius. and ― dans cette sorte de stemmatique philosophique. the general pattern of Averroes' attitude toward what he knows of Philoponus' doctrines is negative. Following Fārābī and Ibn Bājja. and hence on the thought of Aquinas. In any case. Averroes' main source for Philoponus' works seems to have been Fārābī's lost work On Changing Beings. this is. Philoponus is the distant ancestor of the philosophy of the Kalām. a good example of the way the study of the Greek commentary tradition of Late Antiquity can help to shed light on the study of the commentaries Averroes. For Averroes. 130 n. is remarkably similar to Averroes' solution. who in turn was followed by Ibn Bājja and Fārābī. although it is hard to say whether Averroes knew this work first-hand. the unconditional admirer of Aristotle. this view was combated by Alexander of Aphrodisias. to have much patience with a man who set out to refute the Stagirite. Rashed (date1995/2007? p.
61 H.) are entirely accurate. such as the one that holds that Simplicius' Commentary on the Physics was unknown to the Arab world. Gätje's fundamental article61 that transformed this view into a virtually unquestioned axiom.).. for instance. 1999a. I. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Glasner and Rashed (to name but a few). 1136. Much work is still to be done. that ― On the whole the importance of the commentators of Aristotle for Arabic and medieval philosophy in general has not yet been sufficiently acknowledged ‖59. It was H. vol. and a careful scrutiny of the late Peripatetic Neoplatonic commentaries of the Physics may well still a good deal more light on the physical doctrines of Averroes.). p. Yet since the same solution was given by Simplicius in his commentary on Physics 8. rue Guy Mocquet See. Despite the silence of the Arabic bio-bibliographical tradition. it remains true. English (U.). intermediary stage (In Phys. 59 60 58 Ibid.1 and certain fragments of Fārābī's On Changing Beings render this assumption increasingly implausible. 91). I hope to return to this point elsewhere.K. We may well have to re-elaborate certain communes opiniones. p.g. Not Superscript/ Subscript . who subscribes to the axiom. surely the much more economical and plausible hypothesis is that Averroes was indeed aware of Simplicius' arguments against Philoponus. Van den Bergh's Introduction to his translation of Averroes' Tahafut al-Tahafut (The Incoherence of the Incoherence). Despite the considerable progress made over the last generation or so by such scholars as Puig. and Thomas Aquinas60. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Glasner (2009. that Puig's influential analyses of Simplicius' distinctions between two forms of potentiality.. Albertus Magnus. or by other channels that have not yet been identified. London 1954.1 (cf. whether by way of Fārābī and/or Ibn Bājja. 30 ff. albeit indirectly.). Michael Chase (goya@vjf. Ccf. English (U.).fr) CNRS UPR 76/Centre Jean Pépin 7.K. S.19 may judge. 14) that the parallels between the works of Averroes and Simplicius' commentaries on the Physics and the De Caelo are numerous. p. 158) that Fārābī often seems to be following Simplicius' arguments very closely. as Van den Bergh wrote in 1954. for instance. the numerous quasi-literal parallels between Simplicius' commentary on Physics 8. 20 ff. Yet although Puig often remarks (e. and his introduction of a third. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Gätje 1982. xvii ff. is forced to assume that Averroes ― thought up this solution (that the potentiality of fire resides in the wood) in order to brush off Philoponus' criticism ‖. by the way Ghazālī adopted many of Philoponus' anti-Aristotelian arguments in his Tahāfut al-Falāsifah58. Chase 2008.cnrs. for instance. 1128. M.K. Yet even Gätje concedes (p.K. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. English (U. xviii. It is not certain. English (U.
20 Villejuif 94801. France .
Aubert. Left Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: Font: Italic .] (Aristotelis Opera cum Averrois Commentariis. V. Critical edition of the Hebrew text with English translaton and commentary. Epitome de física (filosofía de la naturaleza).. Paulo Israelita interprete (Aristotelis Opera cum Averrois Commentariis. antea quidem difficillimum. Hymans. Venetiis : apud Junctas. Aristotelis de Physico auditu libros octo] Prooemium. Averrois Cordubensis in quatuor libros De coelo Aristotelis Paraphrasis resolutissima. 1r-5r and 5v-433v). Formatted: MC Normal. Madrid : Consejo superior de investigaciones científicas/Instituto Hispano-Arabe de cultura. Voluminis A XX). ed. ff. (2003). Venetiis: apud Junctas. tum ex Iacob Mantini nova translatione. tum ex antiqua castigatissima.M. Leiden : Brill. Genequand.. Averroès Grand Commentaire de la Métaphysique. on the Eternity of the World. ed. London : Duckworth (Ancient Commentators on Aristotle). IV. Vol. Leuven : Peeters (Recherchess de Théologie et Philosophie médiévales. (1984). ff. Cambridge-Jerusalem : The Medieval Academy of AmerciaAmerica/The Israel Academy of Sciences (Corpus philosophorum medii aevi/ Averrois hebraicus/ Medieval Academy books no. 1562 [reprinted Frankfurt a. Wildberg.. Paul (1994). nunc autem ad maximam redactum facilitatem. CCXXXIV). 1962]. Martin. (1986). Versio Hispanica. Paris : Vrin (Bibliothèque de la Faculté de Philosophie et Lettres de l'Université de Liège Fasc. Lettinck. 1). 1962]. 272r-336v. Averroes.. Livre LamLambda. 1562 [reprinted Frankfurt a. Averroes' De substantia orbis. (1984). Francis J. London : Duckworth (Ancient Commentators on Aristotle). Christian (1987). Philoponus on Aristotle Physics 5-8.e. trans. Vol. Averrois Commentaria Magna in Aristotelem De celo et mundo. traducción y estudiod. ed. (Corpus Commentariorum Averrois in Aristotelem. A translation with introduction of Ibn Rushd's commentary on Aristotle's Metaphysics. Ibn Rushd's Metaphysics. A.M.21 Bibliography Texts Averrois in eos [i. Carmody. Josep (1987). Philoponus Against Aristotle. 2 vols. Puig. (Islamic Philosophy and Theology. Bibliotheca 4). 96). book Lām. Charles. Commentaria in eosdem magna [.
München . Torino (Piccola Biblioteca Einaudi). Kruk. Roma : Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei (Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei. The Medieval Posterity of Simplicius‘ Commentary on the Categories : Thomas Aquinas and al-Fârâbî.. Early Arabic Translations from the Greek and the Rise of Islamic Philosophy. 2 vols. 339-405. Michael (2008). Georges C. 2. Leiden : Brill (Brill's Companions to the Christian Tradition. In : Mélanges de philosophie grecque offerts à Mgr Diès par ses élèves. Proofs for Eternity. 5.Wien : Verlag Ferdinand Schöningh. Creation and the Existence of God in Medieval Islamic and Jewish Philosophy. Special issue : Ancient Cosmology and Astronomy. Journal of the American Oriental Society 89. A Journal of the Centre for Ancient Philosophy and the Classical Tradition. ΣΧΟΛΗ. Storia della filosofia nell’Islam medievale.. 21-25. Newton. ____ . p. Discussions on the Eternity of the world in Late Antiquity. In : Plotino e il Neoplatonismo in Oriente e in Occidente (Roma. Endress. D'Ancona. Oxford. I. Chase. Paris : Vrin. Prolégomènes à une nouvelle édition du De causis arabe (Kitāb al-ḫayr al-maḥḍ). Problemgeschichtliche Untersuchungen zu den Kontroversen um Weltanfang une Weltunendlichkeit in der arabischen und jüdischen Philosophie des Mittelalters. quaderno no. (1974). Gerhard (1997).1974. Ernst (1965). Endress & R. 1974. (1969). ed. Cristina _ed. p. John Philoponus as a source of medieval Islamic and Jewish proofs of creaton. Herbert A. Le néoplatonisme dans la pensée musulmane. vol. ____ . Simplicius on continuous and instantaneous change : Neoplatonic elements in Simplicius' interpretation of Aristotelian Physics. vol. (1956a). (1987). In : Mélanges Louis Massignon. Irma Maria (1998). ses amis. 10).Paderborn .. Un fragment perdu du De aeternitate mundi de Proclus. ____ . Croese. (2005). Die Ewigkeit der Welt. Behler. 198 : Problemi attuali di scienza e di cultura). État actuel des recherches. The Circle of al-Kindī.22 Studies Anawati. 155-221. 9-29. Medieval Commentaries on Aristotle's Categories. 23). in Études de philosophie musulmane. eds. 5-9 ottobre 1970). In : G. In : Lloyd A. ____ . Damas 73-110. ses collègues. Paris : Vrin. (1956). Davidson. (2011). anno ccclxxi . (Quaestiones Infinitae . The ancient tradition in . Leiden-Utrecht : Zeno Institute of Philosophy. rRepr.
Aquinas' Arabic sources on the age of the universe : a response to Gerald J. 4. Serra. In : Knowledge and the Sciences in Medieval Philosophy. L. Giovanna R. Aristotle's First Mover in an Arabic treatise attributed to Alexander of Aphrodisias. P. Paris : Presses du CNRS. With an edition of the unpublished parts of Ibn Bājja's Commentary on the Physics. Journal of Near Eastern Studies 26. ed. in R. (Aristoteles Semitico-Latinus. 7). A Turning Point in Medieval Natural Philosophy. Goulet.P.23 Christian and Islamic Hellenism : studies on the transmission of Greek philosophy and sciences dedicated to H. ed. Judson. An Arabic summary of a lost work of John Philoponus. Mahdi. Muhsin (1967). t. vol. p. JAOS 85 318-327. Proceeding of the Eight International Congress of Medieval Philosophy (S. Helmut (1982). Padova. t. 14-15 maggio 1999. 43-76. R. Ruth (2009). Sorabji. Puig Montada. Lettinck. pp. (1965). Aristotele e Alessandro di Afrodisia nella tradizione arabe. (Subsidia mediaevalia Patavina . Kraemer. Philopon (Jean-). Israel Oriental Studies 2. Alexander Arabus on the First Cause. Helsinki 24-29 1987 (Vol. Giardina. et al. (in press). In : C. V : De Paccius à Rutilius Rufus. Leiden etc.-J. Emma (in press). Goulet. Averroes' Physics. Divinatio 26. McGinnis. (1990). Aristotle's Physics and its reception in the Arabic world. 307–313). Atti del Colloquio La ricezione araba ed ebraica della filosofia e della scienza greche. A Search for the Roots of Dissent. God or nature ? Philoponus on generability and perishability. Der Islam 59. 179-196. 233-260. Leiden (CNWS publications . p.I. eds. Simplikios in der arabischen Überlieferung. 3). Paris : Presses du Formatted: Font: Italic . Pines. R. ____ (2002).E. London : Oxford University Press.). 191-204. Shlomo (1972). Averroes and Aquinas on Physics VIII 1. D'Ancona & G. V : De Paccius à Rutilius Rufus. 19-74. Alfarabi against Philoponus. Massey. ed. Jon (2007). 320-352 (= Collected Works vol. Gätje. 6-31.. Padova. In Ú : CNRS. 2.. Josep. Gannagé. (1994). 2).M. In : Dictionnaire des Philosophes Antiques. : Brill. A Lost Passage from Philoponus‘ Contra Aristotelem in Arabic Translation. 50). Lindsay (1987).. J. Philopon (Jean-). Glasner. Drossaart Lulofs on his ninetieth birthday. Tradition arabe. Dictionnaire des Phiosophes Antiques.
Richard. English (U. (1990a). F. London : Duckworth. ed. A. London/Ithaca : Cornell University Press. In : J. (2004). Honnefelder. Zur Bewegungsdefinition im VIII.) Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. _____ . In : P. ____ .. 7 : 115–37. Supplement . Rashed. Wieland. Repr. Stone. Carlos (1987). Philoponus and the Rejection of Aristotelian Science. ____ . in id. Italic.. Repr. 19-58. Les Etudes classiques. 35-58. L. 43–82. (1987a). London : Duckworth. science and exegesis in Greek. p. l'Héritage aristotélicien. 181-198.. University of London. in id.S. In : id. G. G. Averroes and the Aristotelian tradition. Les stades de la philosophie naturelle d‘Averroès. Buch der Physik. English (U. John Philoponus. Infinite power impressed : the transformation of Aristotle's physics and theology. London : Institute of Classical Studies. 1987a.. H. The problem of the composition of the heavens (529-1610) : a new fragment of Philoponus and its readers..S. ____ . Schrimpf. The philosophy of the commentators. (1999b).. In : G. Philosophy. eds. the ancient commentators and their influence. Arabic Sciences and Philosophy. (1987b). Rôle et indépendance des scholies dans la tradition byzantine du corpus aristotélicien. 2007. eds. (1990b). Baltussen and M. W. ed. Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 18... (1997). Averroes y el problema de la eternidad del movimento. Sorabji. 1990a. A sourcebook.S. 295-351. (1988). ____ .. Textes inédts de l'Antiquité. Philosophie im Mittelalter. Arabic Sciences and Philosophy.) Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. eds. Aristotle Transformed. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 19. 212 : 231–244. in : La ciudad de Dios. Hamburg. ed. Steel. Leiden etc. On the authorship of the treatise on the harmonization of the Opinions of the two sages attributed to al-Fārābī. vol. (2009). Matter. & Motion. Paris : Les Belles Lettres. Arabic and Latin commentaries. Aertsen. 3 vol.) . Endress & J. Theories in Antiquity and their Sequel. ____ . London : Duckworth.. P. ____ (1999a). Alexandre d'Aphrodise et la Magna Quaestio. 200-600 AD : 400 years of transition. ____ . ____ . Marwan (1995). Beckmann.. English (U. 83). In : id. ed. 85-141. Omnis corporis potentia est finita. Al-Fārābī's lost treatise On changing beings and the possibility of a demonstration of the eternity of the world. 2 (Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies. (2008). 145-159.24 ____ . Adamson. 63. (2005). 269-292. 2007. ed. ____ . Space.
Wolfson. City and School in Late Antique Athens and Alexandria. Un epitome arabe du « De contingentia mundi » de Jean Philopon. Cambridge-London : Harvard University Press. E. Harry Austryn (1976). Formatted: MC Normal. (2006).25 Troupeau. 77-88 . The Philosophy of the Kalam. J. Left Geneva. Gérard (1984). Berkeley/Los Angeles/London (The Transformation of the Classical Heritage 41).. In : Mémorial A. Festugière = Cahiers d'Orientalisme 10. (Cahiers d'Orientalisme 10). Watts. J.
Indent: First line: 0" Table 3 : The doctrine of the double entelechy . implants it into matter (Avicenna) agent can be separate (producing animals/plants that do not proceed from similar seed or nonseparate (fire producing fire) from matter (Themistius.. form (Aristotle. Chase. fire) same origin motion of goal of motion relation between mota different generation/corrup tion .g. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal. fire) ⟶ motum2 (e. Farabi?) agent produces compound of matter. translation actualization of a potentiality Formatted: MC Normal.26 M.g. mutakallim#n) Immaterial giver of Form creates form.g. fire) motum2 (e.g. wood) ⟶ motum1 (e.. Philoponus in the Arabo-Latin tradition Tables Formatted: MC Normal Table 1 Schools latent (Mu‘tazilites) generation = change in substance . nothing comes from nothing maintain creation and invention (al-ibd! ‘ wa-li"tir! j) (Philoponus. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal type of motion two Formatted: MC Normal. Averroes) Table 2 Modes in which motum is prior to motus Mode One Mode Two motum1 (e.
in the sense that what is capable of walking (badistikon) is man. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal.27 Type of entelechy Entelechy2 characteristics has achieved stative-perfective (kekinêtai) kineitai grammatical equivalent completed/perfect form . It must be exclusively through A's nature that A is movable by motion m . not the elements of which he is made up. A must not perish as a result of motion m. 2. For object A to be described as potentially movable (kinêton) by motion m. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal. Left . A must be proximately movable by motion m . the following conditions must hold : 1. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal. cast off all potentiality Entelechy1 has begun but not completed its motion . Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal Table 4 : The doctrine of the twofold dunamis Type dunamis/potentia Dunamis2 (perfect) projects activity/actuality (energeia) Dunamis1 (imperfect) tends toward but does not yet possess perfect capacity fire's (always exercizedexercizsed) wood's dunamis for becoming fire (not yet actualized) dunamis for upward motion of characteristics example Formatted: MC Normal. maintains its potentiality Formatted: MC Normal. and 3. Indent: First line: 0" Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal Table 5 : Philoponus' conditions for describing cases of potential motion. Formatted: MC Normal.
II. Epit. 108-109 Genequand Text 3 = Averroes. Long in De cael. Long in Metaph XII. De subst. Text 3a : Averr. orbis ch. 29 ff. comm. 54-68 Carmody Text 7 = Averr. 11a. Text 11 = Averr. comm. 41 ad Metaph. Bouygues = p. V. VIII.. quaestio. 1497. G ff. comm. 8 251b28-252 a6. 43.28 M. Long in Phys. 8. Text 10 = Averr.). Puig Text 2 = Averroes Long in Metaph. VIII. Long in Phys. De caelo et mundo. Bouygues = p. 71 p. f. Long in De cael. 293v. Text 4 = Averr. Appendix : Texts Formatted: MC Normal Pinax Text 1 = Averr. Middle in De Cael. vol. 705. 293 I ff. 5. Vol. I. 141 F ff. 4. 408. I. quaestio. comm. p. 426va-427ra (ad Phys. comm. Paraphr. L 7. I. p. XII. Long In Phys. p. V. 248 Martin = p. 266a27 ff. comm.. 140. Text 6 = Averr. 340 I ff.. Vol. III p. 7 ff. 293v. IV. 1628 10 ff. Carmody Text 4a = Averr. Phys. 1073a3-13. Long in De cael. Genequand. p. 163 ff. 4. 24. 18. 156-161 Carmody Text 9 = Averr. Text 5 = Averr. Chase. I. comm.. 1. Text 8 = Averr. VIII. III. . comm. 234 ff. Middle in De Cael. 10. 19. vol. Philoponus in the Arabo-Latin tradition. 79. I ff. comm.. 4.
tales como Ibn Sīnā y Abū Bakr ibn aṣ-Ṣā‘ig. there is nothing in the Arabic corresponding to the phrase between asterisks. se imaginaron lo que es por accidente como por esencia. 8 251b28-252 a6. Por esta razón afirmaron la existencia de un movimiento primero en el tiempo. Epit. tanto de nuestra religión como de la cristiana. tal como se imaginan Abū Naṣr en su libro « Sobre los entes cambiantes » y los demás que le siguieron. p. p. 7 ff. English (U. Phys.). 15 vol. pertenecientes al Kalām. The supporters of the latent say that everything is in everything and that becoming is merely the emergence of things one from another *and that the agent is merely the emergence of things one from another*62 and that the agent is only needed in As far as I can tell. por esencia. in the words of Alexander. We say : all people who posit an efficient cause and generation are in general divided. is the least subject to doubts. 413 col. y que solamente con este fin introdujo la definición del movimiento. diciendo que su intención en este lugar era demostrar que antes de cada movimiento hay un otro. Puig Platón y todos los que le siguen. XII Comm. Antes de todos ellos Juan /135/ el Gramático ya se lo imaginó. The two diametrically opposed schools are that of those who maintain the latent (ahl al-kumūn) and that of those who maintain creation and invention (ahl al-ibdā‘ wa-l-iḫtirā‘). the most adapted and suited to it and the most free of contradictions. así como todo el que afirma la producción contingente del mundo. 18 f. pero no pudieron eludir el hecho que antes del mismo hubiera otro movimiento y aunque intentaron encontrar una solución a esta aporía. Averroes long in Metaph. no lo consiguieron. 2 l. Martin (1994. La mayoría remitió este problema a Aristóteles. 234 ff. que la génération n'est que la sortie des choses les unes des autres et que l'agent n'intervient dans la génération que pour faire sortir <les êtres> les uns des autres et pour les distinguer entre eux » 62 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Text 2. IV. 133) gives what appears to be the correct translation. por cuanto éste suponía que antes de cada movimiento hay otro. 108-109 Genequand : This question is extremely difficult and obscure and we shall explain it to the best of our abilities and according to the premises and principles which have been established in our science by the doctrine of the man whose doctrine. Averroes. 1497. Not Superscript/ Subscript . pues empezó a refutar a Aristóteles. into two schools diametrically opposed and between which there are intermediate schools.K. as we have found. Bouygues = p. leaving out the phrase in question : ― Les partisans de la « création latente » disent que tout est dans tout. p.29 Text 1. the most adequate to being.
be finite in power. since it is of finite size. V. And 64 Formatted: MC Normal Comment [RT4]: ? every body ? 63 . Bouygues = p. Not Superscript/ Subscript .. there will be something destructible but eternal.K. whether it is a body moving in a straight line (the elements) or in a circle (the spheres and the fifth element. p. t. cui ne aliqua corruptionis potentia insit : ostensum quoque est cuiusque corporis potentiam esse finitam. This being so. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. whether the body be rectilinear or round ..). according to what Abū Naṣr says <in> On Changing Beings. ideo ut potentia id finitum esse necesse est. sive rectum fuerit corpus. sive rotundum. Middle in De Cael. eo quod idipsum finitum est magnitudine. 41 ad Metaph. If it is said that it acquires incorruptibility from the eternal separate power. It is evident that for them the agent is nothing more than a /1498/ mover. it is necessary that the celestial body as a whole. But this has been shown to be impossible at the end of the first book of De Caelo et Mundo ‖. He says : ― if every body has a finite power and the heaven is a body. 1073a3-13.30 becoming in order to cause things to emerge one from another and to separate them one from another. I. It has also been shown that the power of all every bodybodies is finite. III. Long in Metaph XII comm. Text 3. Genequand Translation Genequand Formatted: MC Normal John the Grammarian raised strong objections against the Peripatetics concerning this problem. Vol. quia potentia finitum. eo quod ostensum est non dari aeternum corruptibile. English (U. so that the Christian John the Grammarian believes that there is no possibility except in the agent63. L 7. Quod cum ita fuerit. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. 64 That is.K. 248 Martin = p.).. 293G Sed ardua his superest quaestio. English (U. since it has been shown that there is nothing eternal and corruptible in which no capacity for corruption inheres. 163 ff. but everything finite is necessarily corruptible. but he creates everything. since it is finite in size. then it will have a finite power . The supporters of invention and creation say that the agent produces the whole world and creates it completely and that the existence of a matter on which to act is not a condition of his action. so that the heaven is corruptible.annahu laysa hāhunā imkān illā fī al-fā’il faqaṭ. 1628 10 ff. ether). Averroes. 293v. Yet this difficult question remains. quaestio. This is the view well-known among the theologians (mutakallimūn) of our religion and of the religion of the Christians. &. quia magnitudine finitum est. Formatted: MC Normal Text 3a : Averr. G ff. coeleste corpus utique.
This is what Alexander clearly thought in some of his works. ch. igitur est generabilis et corruptibilis etc. dixit enim si mundus est finitus. and since it is finite. necessarium vero ab alio. unum. Long in De cael. Whence it follows that the world must be Formatted: MC Normal . incorruptibile vero propter infinitam potentiam. the result will be that it will be corruptible according to the finite one. saying that it must have two modes of existence. transmitted this question to the Peripatetics in such a way that they cannot avoid them. 5. alterum. comm. de qua plures consyderantes non potuerunt evadere. & eius in hoc comes fuit Avicen. and incorruptible according to the infinite one. however. Et hoc plane in quibusdam suis sermonibus censuit Alexander. II.. quoniam si illic sint due potentiae finita scilicet et infinita. H is its motive force. Comment [RT5]: ? separate ? Text 4. 11a : A. et secundum infinitam Comment [RT6]: ? these issues ? Comment [RT7]: ? For ? Formatted: MC Normal Text 4a Averr. and Avicenna. quo per seipsum necessarium est. It is : if the world is eternal it must necessarily possess an infinite potentiality. Formatted: MC Normal Peripateticis tali modo quod non possunt evadere ea. But For if there are two potentialities there. Formatted: MC Normal since it is finite in power. And John has raised a question concerning the eternity of the world. 29 ff. and many of those who speculated on these matters found it difficult to evade this question. De substantia orbis. Aristotle showed that the world is finite [in extension]. viz. it is possible that it may be corrupted from itself. Hyman 1986.31 ideo possibile est ut corrumpatur ex se. continget ut secundum finitam sit corruptibile incorruptibile.. debet habere potentiam finitam. and another through which it is possible in itself. et scias quod haec quaestio est valde bona. went along with him in this. pp. quo per se quidem possibile est. Carmody : Johannes autem dedit hanc quaestionem John. On the other hand. 71 p. 121-122 : Joannes autem dedit quaestionem.se issues insofar as they concede that there is finite potentiality in this celestial body. secundum quod concedunt quod in isto corpore celesti est potentia finita. separateabstracted from its matter. dicens ipsum necesse esse duplicem habere modum. 408. f. Averr. one that is necessary by itself. finite and infinite. but necessary from something else. but incorruptible owing to the infinite power which. quae abstracta a materia eius H demque motrix virtus existit. it has a finite power.
Prima qui K dem questio valde difficilis est. at the end of the first book of the De Caelo. it is said that if its power were infinite. 20. quod potentia infinita movet in instanti. sequeretur quod duo opposita simul inessent eidem. Aristotle. there will be something that can be corrupted.32 generated and corruptible. it may be doubted whether this includes the celestial body or not. however. proved it is impossible for something that has the Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal Cf. says that the celestial body has acquired immortality from its motor. utrum contineat corpus coeleste. the former K question is difficult indeed and most subtle.. quaest. Doubts are likewise raised about the proposition used in this declaration. in which it is said that the power of every body is finite. Et Alex. quia scilicet dicitur quod. then the celestial body will have finite power : but that whose power is finite is corruptible. contingeret quod motus esset in instanti . 2. de Coe. Now. and yet never will be corrupted. because. si esset potentia infinita. Summa contra Gentiles. Sed impossibile est aliquod corpus in instanti moveri. that is. art. the result would be motion in an instant. 4. Long in Phys. ut supra habitum est. it must act outside of time.K. & mundo 65 Formatted: MC Normal In the proposition assumed here. in quibusdam suis tractatibus respondens di<cit> corpus coeleste adeptum fuisse aeternitatem a suo motore. thus. 12 . qua dicitur quod omnis corporis est potentia finita. & multum scrupulosa. 65 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. & tamen nunquam corrumpetur. 105 a. aut non. quod potest corrumpi. Ergo corpus non potest immediate moveri a potentia infinita. it does not take place in time. Si enim continet J corpus coeleste. Dicet nam aliquis.. But it does not follow that if infinite action belongs to an incorporeal power. quia. si potentia corporea habet actionem infinitam. however. VIII. 2 arg. prima pars. Similiter dubitatur de propositione. quod omnis corporis est potentia finita. dubitari potest. quod potest corrumpi. which is not in matter . Summa theol. This is Plato's opinion : that there is something eternal that can be corrupted. quod agat non in tempore. Arist. est corruptibile. Not Superscript/ Subscript . Ergo Deus non potest immediate movere aliquod corpus. philosophus probat in VIII Physic. & haec Platonis est opinio s. 1. 3 : Praeterea. tunc corporis coelestis erit potentia finita : cuius autem est potentia finita. ut quod Ari. si actio infinita sit potentiae non corporeae. dicit consequens esse. autem in fine primi li. Formatted: MC Normal Text 5. aliquid aeternum esse. 426 I ff. responding in some of his treatises. quod est impossibile. English (U. Aquinas. Alexander. qua utitur in declaratione huius. ipsam agere non in tempore : & non est se sequens. comm. that the power of every body is finite. Potentia autem Dei est infinita. 426 I In propositione autem assumpta hic. CV. Iª q. Averr. 79. qui non est in materia : secundum hoc ergo erit aliquid.. For if it includes J the celestial body.). For someone might say that Aristotle says it follows that is a corporeal power has infinite action. cum omnis motus sit inter opposita.
it would go downward. where he gives the cause why there are no more stars in the heaven than it actuaaully has . insofar as he believes that the world is corruptible and generL ated. since motion that is one in kind is found in air and fire. on the grounds that motion that is one in kind is found in bodies that differ in kind. 54-68 Carmody : According to what Farabi recounts. I. expresse dicit in secundo de Coelo.33 probavit impossibile esse aeternum. De Caelo et Mundo. & mundo quod Coeli est potentia finita : ubi reddit causam quare non insunt Coelo stellae maiores his quae insunt illi. Therefore. Lectio 29. Space After: 0 pt Formatted: MC Normal 66 Aristotle. if they moved to a place that was the same in kind. Comment [RT8]: ???????? Formatted: MC Normal Text 6 = Averr. however. si enim (dicit) hoc esset.). quod opinatur quod mundus sit corruptibilis. for if it did [have more]. Et hoc quidem quod dixit non est ita : motum enim ignis esset idem cum motu aeris si moverentur ad eundem locum specie. But the place of fire necessarily differs from the place of air. similiter fingit de terra et aqua . 283a24ff. 19. This doubt is stronger than any doubt that can occur to them. et generaL bilis. cui insit potentia ad corruptionem . But what he says is not so. especially because Aristotle expressly stated in Book Two of the De Caelo that the heaven's power is finite. John the Grammarian strove to contradict the proposition that every simple motion that is identical in kind belongs to a simple body that is identical in kind. comm. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. recalled this question against the Peripatetics. et ideo si aer poneretur in loco ignis. John the Grammarian. p. English (U.K. for <in that case> the motion of fire would be identical to the motion of air. Long in De cael. Formatted: MC Normal. Et haec dubitatio est fortior omnibus dubitationibus quae possunt accidere his : maxime cum Arist. 8. quia iam dictum est quod motus unus specie est qui ad unum locum specie est : locum autem ignis necessario differt a loco aeris . it would grow tired. verbi gratia quia in aere et igne invenitur unus motus in specie. descenderet ad inferius. for it has already been said that motion that is one in kind is that which is toward a place that is one in kind. 66 potential to be corrupted to be eternal. Not Superscript/ Subscript . and therefore if air were placed in the place of fire.. quapropter non sequitur ut omnis unus motus specie habeat unum corpus in specie proprium. De Caelo. Ioannes autem Grammaticus hanc sibi retinuit quaestionem contra Peripateticos in eo. he imagines the same thing holds true of earth and water. he says. it does not follow that every motion that is one in kind has one body proper to it in kind. The same holds true of the Et laboravit Iohannes Grammaticus secundum quod narravit Alfarabius in contradicendo propositioni dicenti quod omnis motus simplex idem secundum speciem est corporis simplicis eiusdem secundum speciem ex hoc quod cum in corporibus diversis secundum speciem invenitur unus motus specie. For instance. fatigaret. with the commenary of Thomas Aquinas. similiter de motu aque et terre scilicet quod specie differunt in se propter diversitatem suroum locorum.
(in marg. Quorum unus est motum. et ante omnem transmutationem est transmutatio. sit alterius speciei à specie Formatted: MC Normal . sive quod intentio Aristotelis in primo istius tractatus est declarare quod ante omnem motum est motus. secundum quod dixit in libro suo de entibus transmutabilibus. idest & entelechia eius. 236 ff. Cf. Omne. necesse est ipsum fuisse ante in potentia : & quod motus generatus talis est. 157 f. quorum unus est ex hoc. quae sunt quasi principia earum : & incipiamus ex istis in hac scientia à rebus. Formatted: MC Normal.i. Long in Phys. necesse est ut ante esse posse ut moveretur. 251a9 ff. postquam non movebatur. . quarum definitiones determinavimus ex rebus naK turalibus. quod declaratum est de definitione motus. Puig 1999a. quae intellegitur primo aspectu. et hoc idem intellexit Avic. quod movetur. & c. secundum quod est motum. et Avempace Hispanus. (commenting on Phys. Et incoepit ponere ad hoc propositionem notam & est. et ante omnem motum est motus. quam modo dixi. VIII. Idest. It is to be understood from this that the moved thing is prior to motion in two ways : One of these is that the object in motion containing potentiality is of Et intelligendum est ex hoc quod motum est prius tempore motu duobus modis. dicamus igitur. 4. ibid 339A-B: Dico quod haec expositio. Averr. incipiamus igitur primo à rebus. cum res mobiles fuerint ante motum. in quo est potentia. 340 I ff. & d<ixit>.. : Expositio Alfarabij). quia. VIII. Et induxit ad hoc certificandum duos modos. comm. quod omne. est.34 motion of water and earth. 1999b. 1. quod innatum est moveri. necesse est ut res mobiles sint ante motum in unoquoque generum motuum &. tunc potentia ad motum erit ante motum. Dicamus igitur quod motus. cum declaratum est in Tertio istius libri quod altera definitionum motus est L entelechia moti. viz. that they differ from each other owing to the diversity of their places. postquam non fuit. Cf. s. et hoc intellexit Alfarabius. & secundus ex inductione. Space After: 0 pt Formatted: MC Normal Text 7. et quod motus non deficiet secundum genus). quod est. qqua mos est ut determinentur in initiis artium.
igno combusto. The second is that that movable thing containing the potential for motion is moved in 340M act . come into existence. in quo est potentia ad motum. it immediately has a place .). motus enim.).g. scilicet in motu generationis. but in the subject out of which the fire is generated. sit motum in ac340M tu. Et hoc ignoravit Joannes Grammaticus. containing the potential for motion. 1 ff. & in motibus translationis. Greek dunamis. John the Grammarian was ignorant of this.K. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. in the case of fire. ex quo est generatio : & similiter est de corruptione. English (U. Arabic quwwa or imkān) of motion upwards. aut oleo inflammato. In other words.. what is potentially moved is numerically identical with what is moved in act . quod est ignis in actu. The potentiality for this motion therefore does not reside in the subject constituted by the fire in act. English (U. cuius generatio est finis. which is actually in motion upwards. g. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. which is above as a whole. scilicet quod motum in potentia est idem in numero cum moto in actu. in quo est potentia praecedens hunc motum in tempore. statim habet singulam partem illius ubi. & corruptionis. they immediately possess the power. such as fire. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. force. But the subject of the translational motion of the elements. For the motion that has generation as its end and fulfillment has as its subject that out of which comes generation. ut illud mobile. I follow the translation of Puig 1999a 157 : ―ein Platz‖.35 another kind than the kind of object in motion in which the motion itself is present . it immediately has a singular part of that place.K. ex quo generatur ignis. quod quaedam potentiarum invenitur cum illo ad quod est potentia.). when an individual part of it is generated. 1136. v. Not Superscript/ Subscript Latin ubi. statim habet ubi. literally ― a where ‖.). In the case of burning fire. 69 70 71 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. Philoponus argued that as soon as some elemental bodies. in which there is a potentiality temporally preceding this motion. sed in subiecto. upward is distinct from fire. Simplicius (In Phys. English (U. 341A is the body out of which the generation of the element takes place . Secundus est. quando ignis generatur secundum totum.K. v.K. faculty or capacity (Latin potentia. that is. potential and actuality are constantly linked. & complementum. subiectum vero motus translationis elementorum.). Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. & existimavit. . In other words.) refers to this variety of mobile as ― that which has the perfect capacity that projects actuality (to tên teleian ekhon dunamin tên problêtikên tês energeias). the potential preceding it is situated in the wood or oil from which it comes into being. English (U. Primus autem modus invenitur in duobus. such as burning fire or flaming oil. ex quo est generatio elementi. The first mode is found in two <kinds of motion> : in the motion of generation and corruption. quae est corporum simplicium. and considered that some potentiality is found together with that for which it is the potentiality . 67 68 341A est corpus. and in the motions of the translation of simple bodies.K. quod est superius secundum totum : & dum generatur pars singula illius. and the same holds true for corruption. For instance. For instance. wood. when fire is generated as whole. p. Potentia igitur istius motus non est in subiecto. because. quia. suum subiectum est illud. 70 71 69 68 67 moti. in quo est ipse motus. English (U.
and since all that is moved is in place. p. 73 place is a void and an interval. that place is a dimension and a vacuum. 141F ff. 368 ff. IV. comm. 73 72 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.. 568-569. ut dicit Arist. Ioanes vero propter hoc obedit huic. vol. 24 p. He said this because the potential preceding that object in motion does not exist in the object in motion unless it is by force.10-15. p. sed est in ea re ex qua fit mota res. 72 141E Formatted: MC Normal . s. et dictum fuit ei quod potentia precedens hoc motum non est in moto nisi violente. Thomas. & vacuum. cum omne motum sit in loco. (Corollarium de loco).). 156-161 Carmody : Averr. but in that out of which the fire comes to be. aut ponere quod aliquod motum non est in loco. viz. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times.. & dimensionem. comm. or we postulate that F manifestum est ipsum moveri : &. . 705. 705. although for him the void cannot be separated from bodies. but it is in the thing out of which the thing in motion comes to be. lib.36 Formatted: MC Normal Text 8. CAG 17. ut oleo aut ligno Formatted: MC Normal Text 9. Cf. English (U. 5. as Aristotle says. Indeed. 24 p. & dimensio. licet apud ipsum non possit inane separari à a corpore . as in oil or wood Formatted: MC Normal Et ideo erravit Iohannes. not a containing limit. comm. the potential for moving fire is not in a place. Averr. That is why Johannes obeyed this. Not Superscript/ Subscript Cf. non finem continentem. necesse est ut totus orbis sit in loco. 5. long in De cael. locum esse. 7 n. 4. Philoponus. those who say there is a vacuum This section of Averroes' commentary in closely followed by Thomas Aquinas in his De natura loci (Opuscule 51).K. IV. 337 ff.K. 4 l. of the Parma edition (1865). Averr. verbi gratia quod potentia ad motum ignis in loco non est sed in illo ex quo ignis fit. long in De cael. De physico auditu. aut ponere quod 141F locus est inane. et dixit quod inventi sunt motus in substantiis sine potentia antecedenti secundum tempus existente illis substantiis . 4. Paris 1858. the entire orb must be in a place. vol.accidit in eo magna quaestio.. English (U. For instance. 43. vol. ergo sumus inter duo. 18.). 156161 Carmody John was therefore in error when he said that motions have been found in substances without the existence in them of any temporally antecedent potential. quoniam A great question arises with regard to it [the external celestial sphere] : since it obviously moves. We are therefore faced by two alternatives : either we postulate that there is some moved object that is not in place. In Phys. Long In Phys.
It is therefore better to say that the entire celestial body is in place. sunt bipartiti. ergo melius est dicere quod totum corpus coeleste est in loco. sicut est dispositio in toto mundo. & hoc est necesse secundum scientiam a diurnal motion. & apud ipsum partes coeli sunt in loco. & non stellati. Themistius vero dicit respondendo quod corpus coeleste non est in loco secundum totum. sed quia corpus altissimum. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. aut dicamus ipsum esse in loco utroque modo.37 quoniam dicentes vacuum esse. And the same thing happens to the entire orb. quos continet maximus orbis. and in <Aristotle> the parts of the heaven are in a place because they contain their parts. Not Superscript/ Subscript . qui continent suas partes. he imagines that the reason for this is that the celestial body is not mobile as a whole. circa quod revolvuntur. those that are in its concavity. in Phys. viz. 85-141 has shown. si posuerimus quod motus diurnus est totius orbis essentialiter. if we said that the motion of the starry sphere is different from the motion of the orb . sicut dicimus in corpore ultimo. English (U. Themistius says in response that the celestial body is not in place as a whole. and not to the starry one. and John the Grammarian is one of the latter. Et Arist. or according to G the orbs 75 contained by the greatest orb. cum hoc post. or that we say that it is in place in both ways. convexum corporis. Et hoc idem contingit toti orbi. and others that it cannot. Fingit namque quod causa in hoc est. & in hoc dubitaverunt omnes expositores. quorum est Ioanes grammaticus. concessit quod hoc corpus est in loco propter suas partes intrinsecas tantum. although it is internal. or around the convex <surface> of the body around which they revolve. licet sit intra. viz.K. quae sunt in concavo eius. et anima sunt in loco per accidens. v.g. 119. sed secundum partes. he conceded that this body is in a place only because of its internal parts. Rashed 2007. And this is 76 Themistius. 23-24 Schenkl : ὁκνίωο δὲ θαὶ ηὸ πᾶλ θαὶ ηὸ ὅινλ αὐηὸ κὲλ νὐθ ἐλ ηόπῳ. but because the highest body. the orb of fixed stars. as we say in the ultimate body. quae sunt in concavo. p. if we postulated that the diurnal motion pertains essentially to the entire orb. according to the parts that are in the concavity. is not contained by anything. & quia partes concavi sunt in loco. s. that it is in place according to the parts that are in its concavity. istae namque partes moventur circa convexum. but according to parts. Paraphr.). quod est in loco secundum partes quae sunt in concavo eius : si dixerimus quod motus stellati est alius à a motu orbis. quia partes eius sunt in loco praeter ultimum. s. & alii non.. as though it surrounded them. 76 75 As M. sive secundum G orbes. secundum partes. s. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. s. but by parts. quoniam movetur moare divided into two camps : some say it can be separated from bodies. quoniam corpus caeleste non est mobile secundum totum. ηὰ κόξηα δέ. s. English (U. orbis stellarum fixarum non continetur ab aliquo. And Aristotle says later that the heaven and the soul are in place by accident.K. as is the disposition in the entire world. since it moves with 141H 141H tu diurno. or that its parts are in place except the last one. alii namque dicunt ipsum separari à a corporibus. quasi circundet ipsas. quod coelum. All the interpreters have raised doubts about this. sed secundum partes. and that the parts of the concavity are in place. dicit. Indeed. this corresponds to the position of Alexander of Aphrodisias.). For these parts move around the convex.
elementa indigent in hoc. s. & locus sphaerae qui fingitur ab isto. non est in loco. responds to this passage as follows : a sphere. That is. 78 Cf. quoniam est continens divisum a re . And he says that the reason for this is that the round body is delimited by itself. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. qua sphere. the place of bodies characterized by rectilinear motion is their external limit. 85-141. how could it have a convex element ? The view which Philoponus (In Phys. Avempace ver respondit in hoc loco sic. This reading does not seem to make much sense : assuming that the centrum is the celestial pole. English (U. 14 ff. Physics. ut apparet de eis. non corpori 142A rotundo.. Cf. Aristotle. that it is what contains. English (U.K. 209b30 ff. . and in round ones from within . not a round 142A body . while the place of bodies that move in a circle. In what Themistius I has said there are questions of no little importance. 93 Carmody. is its internal limit. quasi igitur locus eius est superficies convexi.. And he strives to say that the definition Aristotle adduced of place. ether). the external surface of the sphere of Saturn). and the body of rectilinear dimensions is delimited by something else. Rashed 2007. as it were. bodies characterized by rectilinear motion (the four traditional elements).). viz. CAG 17. quia aliquid extrinsecum continet illam. quam induxit Arist. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. circa quod revolvitur. is not in a place because something external contains it. & est quodam modo continens sphaeram. Et dicit quod causa in hoc est. secundum quod est sphaera. 317. & quod hoc proprium est corpori recto.. Avempace. divided from the thing. is the convex surface of the inner sphere (ἡ θπξηὴ ἐπηθάλεηα ηῆο ἐληὸο ζθαίξαο. It appears from this that not all men have been able correctly to understand Aristotle's words. & corpus rectarum dimensionum finitur per aliud. est convexum centri. p. quoniam sphaera. 79 Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. its place.K. is the convex of the hinge 78 77 Formatted: MC Normal. which the parts of the fixed sphere touch successively.. quod continet sphaera. sunt quaestiones non modicae. non potuerant intelligere verba Arist. Not Superscript/ Subscript In other words. secundum quod est sphaera. Rectilinear bodies or elements are lacking in that 79 74 77 Cf. the surface of the convex <body> that the sphere contains is. Et in hoc. must be understood in rectilinear bodies from outside. 27.38 naturalem. 74 necessary according to natural science. English (U. & in rotundis ex intrinseco. Long commentary on the De Caelo. . and the place of the sphere imagined by him. Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. English (U.. however. such as the sphere of fixed stars.. quod dixit TheI mistius.). & ideo corpora recta. debet intelligi in corporibus rectis ab extrinseco. p.). Et nititur dicere quod definitio. omnes igitur homines. Tab stops: Not at 1. in loco. comm. 594. M. Averroes.). and in some way it contains the sphere.K. and this is proper to a rectilinear body. as far as its parts are concerned.) attributes to ― the exegetes ‖ is that the place of the sphere of fixed stars. quoniam corpus rotundum finitur per se. recte.K. Thus. Not Superscript/ Subscript .52" around which it revolves. or by motion in a circle (the fifth element. 211b1 f.. qua sphere. that is.
aut diminutionem : linea vero recta est diminuta. qui posuit se contradicentem quaestionibus Ioannis. quod narravit Avempace. I. is deficient. comm. quae invenitur in libris nostris. as is found from the words of Avempace. and in this sense every body will be in place simply and essentially.f Joannes quoque grammaticus hanc dubitationem non preteriit et ejus dictamine concludit. quoniam continet alia sphaera. e. Alfarabius n. the motions of the elemental bodies are limited by the boundaries of their respective sphere. habebit hoc per accidens. and one of these questions is this one. & omnis sphaera sphaerarum coelestium. English (U. Formatted: MC Normal Formatted: MC Normal 80 Text 10.39 B quod finiantur corpore rotundo : rotundum vero non indiget corpore extrinseco.). & secundum hoc omne corpus simpliciter erit in loco essentialiter. sicut erunt corpora recta. Paraphr. is the view of Fārābī. & non incidit in manus nostras B they are delimited by a round body . De caelo et mundo. est opinio Alfarabii. and it has not come down to us. The reason for this is that a round line is perfect. and cannot receive addition or diminution : a straight line.K. recounted by Avempace. & una illarum quaestionum est ista. et non potest recipere additionem. 140 . Averr. and each of the celestial spheres. for it was Fārābī who positioned himself as contradicting the questions of Johannes. in contrast. & essentialiter. sicut invenitur ex verbis Avempace. will have this characteristic accidentally. in that another sphere contains <them>. Formatted: Font: (Default) Times. In this sense. mundum esse genitum. the sphere will be in place simply and essentially. And it seems to me that this. & causa in hoc est quoniam linea rotunda est perfecta. Et secundum hoc sphaera erit in loco simpliciter. Not Superscript/ Subscript . Et videtur mihi quod hoc. 80 In other words. 293 I ff. found in our manuscripts. but a round body does not lack an external body. as will rectilinear bodies.
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