Duns Scotus, John

Duns Scotus, John
(c. 1266–1308)
Franciscan philosopher and theologian. It is known that John Duns, the Scot, was ordained in 1291, but his earlier life is largely uncertain. He lectured in Cambridge and Oxford, then Paris, where he became regent master of theology, and he died in Cologne. His early death interrupted the production of his commentary on the Sentences of Peter Lombard. Scotus was primarily a metaphysician concerned with the nature and reality of God, with such transcendental categories as being, existence, the one, the true, and the good, and with the relations between such notions as causation, matter and form, dependency, and finitude. Amongst his preoccupations was that of the principle of individuation or distinctness, separating one horse from other horses, or me from other men. Scotus supplements the traditional Aristotelian kinds with a ‘ haecceity ’ or ‘thisness’: a uniquely individuating concept under which only one object falls. Scotus was a realist about universals, and his emphasis on the unique individual and its importance in metaphysics and knowledge is reflected in ethics in the primacy he accords to individual freedom, again in reaction to a fatalistic view of the problem of God's omnipotence and foreknowledge. Like Anselm, Scotus locates freedom in our ability to turn from desire and towards justice. Scotus has been admired by such different thinkers as Peirce and Heidegger ; he was dubbed the doctor subtilis, but as applied to his followers the word ‘dunce’ (short for Dunsman) reflects the low esteem into which scholasticism later fell amongst humanists and reformers.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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  • DUNS SCOTUS, JOHN° — (1265–1308), Catholic theologian and philosopher. Scotus opposed many of the views of thomas aquinas . Against Aquinas he affirmed the limitations of philosophy, and argued that the will is superior to the intellect, because the will is free… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Duns Scotus, John — born 1266, Duns, Lothian, Scot. died Nov. 8, 1308, Cologne Medieval Scottish philosopher and Scholastic theologian. He studied and taught at Oxford, where he joined the Franciscans, and later taught at the University of Paris, from which he was… …   Universalium

  • Duns Scotus, John — (ca. 1265–1308)    Known as the Subtle Doctor, the Franciscan friar Duns Scotus was one of the most influential and significant philosophers and theologians of the later Middle Ages. His elaborate and nuanced discussions promoted the importance… …   Encyclopedia of medieval literature

  • Duns Scotus, John — (c. 1266 1308)    A Scottish born Franciscan scholastic philosopher and theologian, Duns Scotus died before he could produce a Summa Theologiae or even revise his existing works, such as his commentaries on Peter Lombard s Sentences. He is known… …   Christian Philosophy

  • Duns Scotus, John — See Henry of Ghent and Duns Scotus, see Intellectual context (The) of later medieval philosophy: universities, Aristotle, arts, theology …   History of philosophy

  • Duns Scotus,John — Duns Sco·tus (dŭnz skōʹtəs), John. Known as “the Subtle Doctor.” 1265? 1308. Scottish Franciscan friar, philosopher, and theologian whose commentary on Lombard s Sentences challenged influential doctrines of Aquinas, including his optimistic view …   Universalium

  • Duns Scotus, John — Giovanni Duns Scoto …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Duns Scotus — Duns Scotus, John …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Duns Scotus — John Duns Scotus John Duns Scotus Full name John Duns Scotus Born c. 1265 Duns, Berwickshire, Scotland Died 8 November 1308 Cologne, Germany …   Wikipedia

  • Scotus, John Duns —    see Duns Scotus, John …   Christian Philosophy

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