Sull’ontologia di Gilberto Porretano

Noctua 1 (2):209-259 (2014)
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This study is concerned with the ontology of Gilbert of Poitiers. Gilbert takes the cue from Boethius’ Theological writings, which contain a system of categorical organization different from the one found in the logical commentaries. Gilbert’s ontological catalog is quite varied: there are special, general and differential subsistences which are called by name: ‘humanity’, ‘animality’, ‘rationality’. We then have all the qualitative and quantitative determinations which rely on subsistences; these properties have particular instantiations, but at the same time eternal specimens. In parallel Gilbert describes a world of individual substances and properties related by certain relations of similarity. There are other objects which Gilbert speaks little about and not always in univocal way, as collections of individual properties and undifferentiated objects, for instance the raw material and the first elements. This rich ontology can be used to support different metaphysical games, my suggestion is that Gilbert does not definitely decide to choose one, whilst providing interesting possible strategies for some of them.


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Roberto Pinzani
University of Parma

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