Sunday, December 28, 2008

Peter Thomae Contra Scotus

After reading William of Alnwick and the huge amount of space he devotes to criticizing Scotus, Peter Thomae turns out to be a bit of a disappointment in his treatise of the same name as William's. He is much more concerned with Auriol (Ledoux didn't allege any Auriol in his fontes, but maybe it hadn't occurred to him to look). Peter does have some brief comments which I have posted below. He does mention Scotus's Oxford position with the four instants of nature but hasn't directly criticized it (yet; I have only read the first two questions), and seems to be on the whole defending Scotus's Parisian position. On the whole is rather mild compared to Alnwick.

Peter Thomae, Quaestiones de esse intelligibili, q. 2 a. 3 (from mss. NP1W):

"Tertium dubium circa dicta videtur esse quia Scotus, cuius doctrinam sequor ut plurimum, videtur dicere quod intellectus divinus producat creabilium quidditates in esse cognito. Hoc enim ipse dicit distinctione 35 Primi in responsione ad unum argumentum ubi enim dicit quod divinus intellectus in primo instanti intelligit essentiam suam sub ratione mere absoluta. In secunda autem instanti producit quidditates creabilium in esse intelligibili.

Ad tertium dubium, si Scotus velit dicere quod divinus intellectus ut ab essentia distinctus producat quidditatem in esse intelligibili, loquendo proprie de productione, non teneo cum ipso. Si tamen dicatur quod ista productio est mere equivoca et metaphorica ut ipse etiam videtur dicere, detur sibi, licet improprie dicatur."


The third doubt seems to be because Scotus, whose doctrine I follow as do many, seems to say that the divine intellect produces the quiddities of creatable things in 'the act of being thought'. For this he says in distinction 35 of the first Book [of the Sentences] in response to an argument where he says that the divine intellect in the first instant understands his own essence under an aspect merely absolute. In the second however he produces the quiddities of creatable things in intelligibile being.

To the third doubt, if Scotus meant to say that the divine intellect as distinct from the essence produces a quiddity in intelligibile being, speaking properly about production, I do not hold this with him. If however it is said that that production is merely equivocal and metaphorical as he himself seems to say, let it be granted him, althought he spoke improperly."

Oh yes; if you don't know who Peter Thomae is, consult Bert Roest's website for a list of literature. Basically, he was born in Galicia (no one knows when), and ended up at the franciscun studium in Barcelona, later served as Papal penitentiary and abbreviator for John XXII, and seems to have fallen out of favor under Benedict XII as he was jailed on charges of sorcery. He died in prison in Noves, in the spring of 1340.

No comments: