Boethius's In Ciceronis Topica

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Cornell University Press, 1988 - History - 277 pages
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In Ciceronis Topica and De topicis differentiis are Boethius's two treatises on Topics (loci). Together these two works present Boethius's theory of the art of discovering arguments, a theory that was highly influential in the history of medieval logic. Eleonore Stump here presents the first English-language translation of In Ciceronis Topica. Noteworthy as a dialectical text, In Ciceronis Topica is also a rich storehouse of information on Stoic logic and Roman law and rhetoric, as well as on Boethius himself and the thought and culture of his period. Stump's Introduction supplies essential information about In Ciceronis Topica, Boethius's life, and the tradition of dialectic; her detailed notes explore the many philosophical problems in Boethius's text.

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About the author (1988)

Born of a distinguished family, Boethius received the best possible education in the liberal arts in Athens and then entered public life under Theodoric the Ostrogoth, ruler of Italy. Boethius obtained the highest office, but was later accused of treason, imprisoned, and executed. In the dungeon of Alvanzano, near Milan, during his imprisonment, he composed "The Consolation of Philosophy," a remarkable piece of prose literature as well as philosophy. Boethius's outlook, like that of all the Church Fathers, was Platonistic, but he preserved much of the elementary logic of Aristotle. Boethius reported in his commentaries the views of Aristotelians even when they disagreed with his Platonism. Thus he created an interest in Aristotle in subsequent centuries and provided a basis for the introduction of Aristotle's works into Europe in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Boethius was put to death in 526.

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