Selected Figures of Scholastic Tradition I
5. Johannes Scotus Eriugena
Johannes Scotus Eriugena (810 – 877) is considered to be the most philosophically relevant author of this period. From the year 840 until his death, he lived at the court of Charles the Bald where he taught liberal arts.
Eriugena contributed to the tradition of teaching seven liberal arts by introducing the script Satira de nuptiis Philologiae et Mercurii by the pagan author Martianus Capella (5th century) into schools, and by commenting on it in his work Annontiationes in Martianum. By doing this, he significantly contributed to knowledge of nature as the space of divine revelation. However, his influence on the tradition of the teaching of the liberal arts was much broader. Within these arts he supported the development of individual philosophical disciplines. In dialectics he contributed to development of logic, noetics and metaphysics. In grammar he aided development of the ← 45 | 46 → basics of philosophy of language. He was also influential thanks to his translations of Pseudo-Dionysius Areopagite, Gregory of Nyssa and Maximus the Confessor.
We also have to mention his involvement in the dispute about the freedom of human will, which took place in the context of a confrontation with the Benedictine monk, theologian and poet Gottschalk (805 – 868). Gottschalk’s teaching on predestination and three sorts of divinity, creation of man and Eucharist was provoking passionate polemics among scholars and authors across the continent. He was opposed by many, including but not limited to the theologian Paschasius Radbertus (785 – 865), Ratramnus of Corbie,...
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