Abstraction and the object of the human intellect according to Henry of Ghent J. V. BROWN I - INTRODLICTION hile it is not usual to classify Henry of Ghent (?-I293) as a W "major" figure of the I3th century, an examination of his thought does give us a rare opportunity to observe what it must have been like for philosophers and theologians to labour in the shadows of the famous Condemnation of 1 2 77 . A secular master at the University of Paris from 1276 to 1292, he was appointed by Etienne Tempier, bishop of Paris, to the Commission that drew up the list of 219 propositions that were condemned.2 Judging both from the title he was to receive (Doctor Solemnis) and from the general nature of his works, he seems to have represented conservative interests on that Commission.3 3 Considering the content of some of the condemned propositions, then, it would not be surprising to find Henry of Ghent displaying a much more restrained attitude toward philosophy and the scope of human reason than did many of his immediate predecessors and his contemporaries. 4 This, perhaps more than anything else, explains both Henry's ubiquitous interest in
Vivarium – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1973
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