By Frederick Copleston
Conceived initially as a major presentation of the improvement of philosophy for Catholic seminary scholars, Frederick Copleston's nine-volume A heritage Of Philosophy has journeyed some distance past the modest goal of its writer to common acclaim because the most sensible historical past of philosophy in English.
Copleston, an Oxford Jesuit of gigantic erudition who as soon as tangled with A.J. Ayer in a fabled debate concerning the life of God and the potential for metaphysics, knew that seminary scholars have been fed a woefully insufficient nutrition of theses and proofs, and that their familiarity with such a lot of history's nice thinkers was once decreased to simplistic caricatures. Copleston got down to redress the inaccurate by way of writing a whole historical past of Western Philosophy, one crackling with incident and highbrow pleasure - and person who provides complete position to every philosopher, featuring his inspiration in a fantastically rounded demeanour and displaying his hyperlinks to those that went ahead of and to people who got here after him.
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Conceived initially as a significant presentation of the advance of philosophy for Catholic seminary scholars, Frederick Copleston's nine-volume A historical past Of Philosophy has journeyed a long way past the modest function of its writer to common acclaim because the most sensible heritage of philosophy in English.
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Additional info for A History of Philosophy, Volume 2: Medieval Philosophy: From Augustine to Duns Scotus
THE PATRISTIC PERIOD 25 a materialist, since he may have held a materialistic theory without realising the fact that some of the attributes he ascribed to the soul were incompatible with a fully materialist position. One of the great services rendered by Tertullian to Christian thought was his development of theological and, to some extent, of philosophical terminology in the Latin language. 1 In his doctrine of the Word 2 he appeals explicitly to the Stoics, to Zeno and Cleanthes. 3 However, of Tertullian's theological developments and of his orthodoxy or unorthodoxy it is not our concern to speak.
In this section it is sufficient to mention very briefly Si. Ambrose (about 333 to 397), Bishop of Milan. St. e. an interest in practical and ethical matters, coupled with little facility or taste for metaphysical speculation. In his dogmatic and Scriptural work he depended mainly on the Greek Fathers; but in ethics he was influenced by Cicero, and in his De officiis ministrorum, composed about 391 and addressed to the clergy of Milan, he provided a Christian counterpart to the De officiis of the great Roman orator.
Iii) In his Adversus Gentes (about 303) Arnobius makes some curious observations concerning the soul. Thus, although he affirms creationism, as against the Platonic doctrine of pre-existence, he makes the creating agent a being inferior to God, and he also asserts the gratuitous character of the soul's immortality, denying a natural immortality. One motive was evidently that of using the gratuitous character of immortality as an argument for becoming a Christian and leading a moral life. Again, while combating the Platonic theory of reminiscence, he asserts the experiential origin of all our ideas with one exception, the idea of God.