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The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury,9781589880580

The Metalogicon of John of Salisbury

Edition: 1st
Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 11/1/2009
Publisher(s): Consortium Book Sales & Distribution
Availability: This title is currently not available.


Written in 1159 and addressed to Thomas Becker, John of Salishury's The Metologicon presents-and defends-a thorough study of the liberal arts of grammar, logic, and rhetoric. The very name "Metalogicon," a coinage by the author, brings together the Greek meta (on behalf of) and logicon (logic or logical studies). Thus, in naming his text, he also explained it. With this lucid treatise on education, John of Salisbury urges a thorough grounding in the arts of words (oral and written) and reasoning, as these topics are addressed in grammar and logic.

Author Biography

John of Salisbury (ca. 1115-80) studied with many of the great masters of the early twelfth century. He acted as an aide to Thomas Becket, was a friend of Pope Hadrian IV, was an annoyance to (if not an outright enemy of) England's king Henry II, and served as Bishop of Chartres. Daniel D. McGarry was professor of history at Saint Louis University.

Table of Contents

Introduction: John of Salisbury History of the Text Analysis of the Metalogicon Sources Latin of the Metalogicon Historical Positionp. xv
p. 3
The false accusation that has evoked this rejoinder to Cornificiusp. 9
A description of Cornificius, without giving his namep. 12
When, how, and by whom Cornificius was educatedp. 13
The lot of his companions in errorp. 17
What great men that tribe dares to defame, and why they do thisp. 21
The arguments on which Cornificius bases his contentionp. 24
Praise of Eloquencep. 26
The necessity of helping nature by use and exercisep. 28
That one who attacks logic is trying to rob mankind of eloquencep. 31
What "logic" means, and how we should endeavor to acquire all arts that are not reprobatep. 32
The nature of art, the various hinds of innate abilities, and the fact that natural talents should be cultivated and developed by the artsp. 33
Why some arts are called "liberal"p. 36
Whence grammar gets its namep. 37
Although it is not natural, grammar imitates naturep. 38
That adjectives of secondary application should not be copulated with nouns of primary application, as in the example "a patronymic horse"p. 41
That adjectives of primary origin are copulated with nouns of primary applicationp. 47
That grammar also imitates nature in poetryp. 51
What grammar should prescribe, and what it should forbidp. 52
That a knowledge of figures [of speech] is most usefulp. 56
with what the grammarian should concern himselfp. 58
By what great men grammar has been appreciated, and the fact that ignorance of this art is as much a handicap in philosophy as is deafness and dumbnessp. 60
That Cornificius invokes the authority of Seneca to defend his erroneous contentionsp. 62
The chief aids to philosophical inquiry and the practice of virtue; as well as how grammar is the foundation of both philosophy and virtuep. 64
Practical observations on reading and lecturing, together with [an account of] the method employed by Bernard of Chartres and his followersp. 65
A short conclusion concerning the value of grammarp. 72
p. 73
Because its object is to ascertain the truth, logic is a valuable asset in all fields of philosophyp. 74
The Peripatetic school, and the origin and founder of logicp. 76
That those who would philosophize should be taught logic. Also the distinction between demonstrative, probable, and sophistical logicp. 78
What dialectic is, and whence it gets its namep. 80
The subdivisions of the dialectical art, and the objective of logiciansp. 81
That all seek after logic, yet not all are successful in their questp. 84
That those who are verbal jugglers of irrelevant nonsense must first be disabused of their erring ways before they can come to know anythingp. 88
If they had but heeded Aristotle, he would have prevented them from going to extremesp. 90
That dialectic is ineffective when it is divorced from other studiesp. 93
On whose authority the foregoing and following are basedp. 95
The limited extent of the efficacy of dialectic by itselfp. 100
The subject mater of dialectic, and the means it usesp. 101
The tremendous value of a scientific knowledge of probable principles; and the difficulties involved in determining what principles are absolutely necessaryp. 103
More on the same subjectp. 106
What is a dialectical proposition, and what a dialectical problemp. 107
That all other teachers of this art [of dialectic] acknowledge Aristotle as their masterp. 109
In what a pernicious manner logic is sometimes taught; and the ideas of moderns about [the nature of] genera and speciesp. 111
That men always alter the opinions of their predecessorsp. 116
Wherein teachers of this kind are not to be forgivenp. 117
Aristotle's opinion concerning genera and species, supported by numerous confirmatory reasons and references to written worksp. 118
p. 142
How one should lecture on Porphyry and other booksp. 146
The utility of the Categories, and [some remarks concerning] their instrumentsp. 150
What is the scope of the predicaments, and with what the prudent moderation of those who philosophize should rest contentp. 155
The scope and usefulness of the Periermenie [Interpretation], or more correctly of the Periermeniasp. 165
What constitutes the body of the art, and [some remarks on] the utility of the book of the Topicsp. 170
The utility and scope of the [first] three books of the Topicsp. 176
A brief account of the fourth and fifth books [of the Topics]p. 179
Of definition, the subject of the sixth book [of the Topics]p. 181
The problem of identity and diversity, which is treated in the seventh book; together with some general observations concerning the Topicsp. 185
The utility of the eighty book [of the Topics]p. 189
p. 203
The book of the Analytics examines reasoningp. 204
The universal utility of this sciences [of the Analytics], and the etymology of its titlep. 205
The book's utility does not include the provision of rhetorical expressionp. 206
The scope of the first book [of the Analytics]p. 207
The scope of the second book] [of the Analytics]p. 209
The difficulty of the Posterior Analytics, and whence this [difficulty] proceedsp. 212
Why Aristotle has come to be called "the philosopher" par excellencep. 213
The [proper] function of demonstrative logic, as well as the sources and techniques of demonstration. Also the fact that sensation is the basis of science, and how this is truep. 214
What sensation is, and how it, together with imagination, is the foundation of every branch of philosophyp. 216
Imagination, and the fact that it is the source of affections that either compose and order, or disturb and deform the soulp. 218
The nature of imagination, together with remarks on opinion. Also how opinion and sensation may be deceived, and the origin of fronesis, which we call "prudence"p. 220
The nature, subject matter, and activities of prudence; and how science originates from sensationp. 221
The difference between "science" and "wisdom," and what is "faith"p. 222
The relationship of prudence and truth, the origins of prudence, and the nature of reasonp. 224
More about what reason is; as well as the fact that the word "reason" has several different meanings; and that reasons are everlastingp. 225
A distinction of various meanings [of the word "reason"], and the fact that brute animals do not possess reason, even though they may seem to have discernment. Also the origin of human reason according to the Hebrewsp. 226
Reason's function; why sensation, which reason supervises, is situated in the head; and who are philology's servantsp. 228
The distinction between reason and [intuitive] understanding, and the nature of the latterp. 230
The nature of wisdom, and the fact that, with the help of grace, wisdom derives [originally] from sense perceptionp. 231
The cognition, simplicity, and immortality of the soul, according to Cicerop. 232
Although Aristotle has not sufficiently discussed hypothetical [conditional] reasoning in the foregoing books, he has, as it were, sowed seed for such a treatmentp. 235
Sophistry and its utilityp. 235
The Sophistical Refutationsp. 238
A word about those who disparage the works of Aristotlep. 240
The fact that Cornificius is even more contemptible than Bromius, the buffoon of the gods. Also how Augustine and other philosophers praise logicp. 241
What tactics we should employ against Cornificius, and [other like] perverse calumniators [of logic]p. 242
Although he has been mistaken on several points, Aristotle is preeminent in logicp. 243
How logic should be employedp. 244
That the temerity of adolescence should be restrained; why eloquence weds philology; and what should be our main objectivesp. 245
The fact that philology precedes its two sisters. Also what investigation by categories is appropriate in a discussion of reason and truthp. 247
The nature of original reason, and some observations concerning philosophical sectsp. 250
What is opposed to reason, and the fact that the word "reason" has several different senses, as well as that reasons are eternalp. 252
The imperfection of human reason; and the fact that the word "true" has various sensesp. 252
The etymology of the word uerum ["true"], the nature of truth, and what is contrary to truth, and what is contrary to truthp. 255
More about truths, and the fact that things, words, and truths are said to exist in different ways, with an explanation of the latterp. 258
The difference between things that are true and things that only seem to be true, according to the Platonistsp. 261
That things, opinions, and speech are called "true" or "false" in different senses; and why such expressions are called "modal"p. 263
The intimate connection between reason and truth, with a brief explanation concerning the nature of eachp. 266
A continuation of the aforesaid [discussion]. Also the fact that neither reason nor truth have contrariesp. 267
The proper aim of the Peripatetics, as well as of all who philosophize correctly, and the eight obstacles to understandingp. 268
[Untitled] [The limitations of reason and the function of faith]p. 272
How the fact that the world is subject to vanity is confirmed by visible proofs, and why this book is now concludedp. 273
Bibliographyp. 279
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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