Monday, June 23, 2014

New Translations

CUA press has two new translations coming up:   Scotus' commentary on the Categories, and the commentaries on the Perihermenias. Furthermore, I was reading on a Facebook thread on the Thomistic discussion forum where I noticed a comment from someone at Benedictine college, stating that they were working on the Porphyry commentary as well. So, if we recall that Wolter and Etzkorn already translated the questions on the Metaphysics, that really leaves only the De anima, Elenchorum and the Theoremata before we have a complete translation of the Opera Philosophica. This is certainly welcome news, as some of Wolter's translations have been going out of print. So far, by my count, the De primo principio, the Duns Scotus Metaphysician volume, and of course the Quodlibet, which has been out of print for years.

Lest the nefarious quidam accuse me of keeping a double standard, for I have been known to complain about re-translating the works of Aquinas, let me say that, sure, it's not ideal, everyone should learn latin. I agree with my co-bloggers' comments regarding latin that he made in the course of the debate with Feser. But it is better for people to be reading Scotus in translation than not at all (which is a very real danger), so let the translators continue their work with my thanks.

And hey, once they get done, why not re-translate the Summa contra gentiles? That translation is pretty old, after all.


James Taddeo said...

Dear Mr. Sullivan,
I am doing some independent research into Religious Philosophy and Medieval Philosopher and your writing fascinates me; I am wondering if you might have the time to add some perspective to some philosophical questions I have that I am unable to find a discernable answer to?


My email is:

James Taddeo

Nathanael said...

The medieval philosophical texts that have been translated are an eccentric bunch; Aquinas, Bonaventure, Scotus, and Ockham all have a good number of works in English but Albertus Magnus and Alexander of Hales remain untranslated while virtually everything by William of Auvergne is in English now. And that doesn't touch the 14th century where we have translations of Wyclif and Peter Olivi and Henry of Harclay (!) but not Durandus or Auriol or Adam Wodeham or Gregory of Rimini.

Daniel said...

Come on, come on, before we get to retranslating Thomas let’s have a full translation of the Commentary on the Sentences and readily available translations of commentaries on On The Heavens, Generation and Corruption and so forth!

More Bonaventure material is always welcome too. Wasn’t the Franciscan University Press going to be bringing out a translation of the first half of his Sentence Commentary this year?

Daniel (who, for the record, finally managed to acquire a copy of Scotus' Quodlibets without having to sell an internal organ to afford the cost)

Michael Sullivan said...

Mr Taddeo,

feel free to post your questions here and I'll see what I can do.


I believe the Bonaventure Sentences volume is out. It's a selection of excerpts on the philosophy of God. A translation of the first half of the sentences commentary would be enormous, probably a couple of thousand pages.

A second volume on Bonaventure on creation is in the works; I may be involved with producing it.

Daniel said...

@Michael, thanks. If you could provide any further link or publication details I would be exceedingly grateful.

I may be wrong here but I thought that the Franciscan Archive project had an English translation of Book I of his (Bonaventure’s) Sentence Commentary available online until it was taking down to be replaced by an onsale CD version with the promise of a print edition to see release in 2014: neither that latter nor even the CD are anyway were to be seen now.

‘A second volume on Bonaventure on creation is in the works; I may be involved with producing it.’

In that case kudos and we look forward to hearing more.

Michael Sullivan said...


This is the book I was talking about:

I don't know anything about the Franciscan Archive project. I was aware of its existence some years ago; I believe it was a one-man show, not connected with any institution. I hadn't checked up on it in a long time.

Bartholomew Masters said...

I look forward the volume you mention, Michael. The Houser-Noone volume is very good. The intro. is quite helpful... with some minor quibbles. I'm involved in the BTTS project, working on the theological virtues, and I'd be happy to help seeing the 2 Sent. project move forward if that's at all needed or desired.

J. Isaac Goff

Daniel said...


I repeat: thanks very much.

Oddly enough that volume doesn’t appear to show up on Amazon searches or on Bookfinder. Perhaps it really was out this year. Either way I greatly look forward to getting my hands on a copy.