Ramon Llull (1232-1316), born on Majorca, was one of the most remarkable lay intellectuals of the thirteenth century. He devoted much of his life to promoting missions among unbelievers, the reform of Western Christian society, and personal spiritual perfection. He wrote over 200 philosophical and theological works in Catalan, Latin, and Arabic. Many of these expound on his "Great Universal Art of Finding Truth," an idiosyncratic dialectical system that he thought capable of proving Catholic beliefs to non-believers. This study offers (...) the first full-length analysis of his theories about rhetoric and preaching, which were central to his evangelizing activities. It explains how Llull attempted to synthesize commonplace advice about courtly speech and techniques of popular sermons into a single program for secular and sacred eloquence that would necessarily promote love of God and neighbor. Llull's work is remarkable testimony to the diffusion of clerical culture among educated lay-people of his era, and to their enthusiasm for applying that knowledge in the pursuit of learning and piety. This book should find a place on the shelf of every scholar of medieval history, religion, and rhetoric. (shrink)
A survey of the work of the Majorcan lay theologian and philosopher Ramon Llull, along with examples of its wide influence in late medieval, Renaissance, and early modern Europe and in colonial Spanish America.
This book presents a comprehensive critical survey of all the logical doctrines of the well-known but little understood Catalan philosopher and theologian, Ramon Llull (1232-1316). The highly idiosyncratic character of Llull's writings has long frustrated the efforts of general medieval historians to define his contribution to later scholastic culture, and has resisted attempts by specialists to explain exactly how his methods and procedures worked. This new study--the first book-length treatment in English of Llull's philosophy to appear in over fifty years--seeks (...) to resolve both of these difficulties. The author argues that Llull's peculiar logical doctrines result from his reinterpretation of the use of commonplace scholastic teachings according to his own preferred ethical and spiritual ideals. (shrink)