John Pagus on Aristotle's Categories

A Study of the Rationes Praedicamenta

Edited by Heine Hansen

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Text edition - hardback

Extensive study of one of the first extant thirteenth-century commentaries on aristotle's categories.

The Rationes super Praedicamenta Aristotelis of John Pagus is one of the earliest known literary products of the Arts Faculty of the University of Paris. Written in the 1230s, it is among the first extant commentaries on Aristotle's Categories and reflects a period in which philosophers had already absorbed the full range of Aristotle's logical writings and were becoming increasingly familiar with his physical and metaphysical works. The present volume contains the first full critical edition of the text, preceded by an extensive introductory study consisting of two parts. The first part describes the life and work of John Pagus, the manuscript sources, formal features, authoritative sources, and date of his commentary, as well as its relationship to other known commentaries from the period. The second part is devoted to an analysis of some of the key features of Pagus' interpretation of the categories. The author takes account of Pagus' systematic construal of Aristotle's text, focusing particular attention on his position on perennial issues such as what categories are, which categories there are, what sort of items they collect, whether or not they can overlap, and the relationship between logical and metaphysical categories. To more appreciate and understand Pagus' approach, the volume also pays considerable attention to the views of his near-contemporaries Nicholas of Paris and Robert Kilwardby.

This publication is GPRC-labeled (Guaranteed Peer Reviewed Content).



 Chapter One The Author and his Work

 Introduction: Logic in the Thirteenth Century

1 John Pagus: Life and Works
1.1 Life
1.2 Works

2 The Commentary on the Categories
2.1 Manuscript Sources
2.2 Formal Features
2.3 Authoritative Sources
2.4 Contemporary Commentaries
2.5 Date of Composition

Chapter Two Pagus' Interpretation of the Categories

Introduction: Aristotle's Categories

1 The Categories and Logic
2 The Subject Matter of the Categories
3 The Notion of a Category
4 Equivocals, Univocals, Denominatives
5 The Ontological Square
6 The Antepredicamental Rules
7 The Content of the Category System
8 Substance
9 Accidents

Appendix Stylistic Comparison of the Commentaries in MS Padua, Biblioteca Universitaria 1589


Chapter Three Editor's Preface

1 Ratio edendi
2 Sigla et Compendia

Chapter Four John Pagus: Rationes super Praedicamenta Aristotelis

Aequivoca dicuntur etc. (1.1a1)
Univoca dicuntur etc. (1.1a7)
Denominativa dicuntur etc. (1.1a13)
Eorum quae sunt alia sunt in subiecto etc. (2.1a20)
Quando autem alterum de altero etc. (3.1b10)
Eorum quae secundum nullam complexionem dicuntur etc. (4.1b25)
Substantia est quae proprie etc. (5.2a12)
Manifestum est autem etc. (5.2a19)
Secundarum vero substantiarum etc. (5.2b7)
10 Merito autem post principales etc. (5.2b30)
11 Commune est autem etc. (5.3a7)
12 Inest autem substantiis etc. (5.3a33)
13 Inest autem substantiis etc. (5.3b25)
14 Maxime vero etc. (5.4a10)
15 Sed et si quis hoc suscipiat (5.4a27)
16 Quantitatis autem etc. (6.4b20)
17 Partium etenim numeri (6.4b26)
18 Linea vero continua est (6.5a1)
19 Amplius quidem (6.5a15)
20 Proprie autem quantitates (6.5a39)
21 Amplius quantitati nihil est contrarium (6.5b12)
22 Amplius si magnum et parvum (6.5b33)
23 Sed non videtur quantitas suscipere (6.6a20)
24 Ad aliquid vero talia dicuntur (7.6a36)
25 Inest autem contrarietas (7.6b15)
26 Omnia autem relativa ad convertentiam dicuntur (7.6b27)
27 Omnia ergo quae ad aliquid dicuntur (7.7a22)
28 Videtur autem ad aliquid simul esse natura (7.7b15)
29 Habet autem quaestionem utrum nulla substantia (7.8a14)
30 Ex his ergo manifestum est (7.8a35)
31 Qualitatem autem dico etc. (8.8b25)
32 Aliud vero genus qualitatis (8.9a14)
33 Tertia vero species qualitatis etc. (8.9a28)
34 Quoniam ergo fiunt per aliquam etc. (8.9b12)
35 Quartum vero genus (8.10a11)
36 Inest autem contrarietas secundum quod quale etc. (8.10b12)
37 Triangulus vero etc. (8.11a5)
38 Suscipit autem facere et pati etc. (9.11b1)
39 Quotiens autem solet opponi etc. (10.11b17)
40 Quorum vero non est necessarium etc. (10.12a9)
41 Non est autem neque quod sub affirmatione etc. (10.12b5)
42 In privatione vero et habitu etc. (10.13a3)
43 Quaecumque vero ut affirmatio et negatio (10.13a37)
44 Contrarium autem etc. (11.13b36)
45 Prius autem quadrupliciter dicitur etc. (12.14a26)

Appendix Anonymus Patavinus: Commentarii in Praedicamenta Aristotelis fragmentum


Index Locorum

Index Quaestionum

Format: Text edition - hardback

Size: 240 × 160 × 35 mm

311 pages

ISBN: 9789058679130

Publication: November 29, 2012

Series: Ancient and Medieval Philosophy - Series 1 45

Languages: English

Stock item number: 67780

Heine Hansen has studied classics at the University of Copenhagen and holds a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Sydney (2010). He is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Copenhagen.

Ondanks deze kritische bemerkingen, kunnen wij alleen maar onze waardering uitspreken voor het beter toegankelijk maken van dit werk van Pagus, des te meer daar een groot deel van het werk enkel in een unicum bewaard bleef.
Jules Janssens, Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, 77/2015, nr 4


This is an excellent edition of a crucial text in medieval logic. The edition is excellent because the text correctly represents the manuscript and because the editor considers the historical context, providing parallel texts from Nicholas of Paris and Robert Kilwardby.
Rega Wood, Indiana University, Bloomington, The Journal of the History of Philosophy, Volume 52, Number 1, January 2014