Volume 61, Issue 1, March 2021
Does Analogy Work in Demonstration?
A Scotist’s Critique of Thomism
Thomas de Vio Cajetan produced a highly influential Thomistic treatise on analogy entitled De nominum analogia. The merits of this work have been contested since the sixteenth century. Notable twentieth-century Thomists who adopted many of the teachings of De nominum analogia include Jacques Maritain and Yves Simon. Joshua Hochschild’s The Semantics of Analogy highlighted the significance of chapter ten, where Cajetan applies his theory to resolve the problem of demonstrations that use analogous terms, with the explicit purpose of addressing a serious challenge from Scotists regarding the use of analogy in metaphysics. This paper examines the criticism of Cajetan’s way of using analogous terms in demonstrations by the seventeenth-century Franciscan Scotist Bartolomeo Mastri. It shows how the Thomist differs from the Scotist and analyzes these rival positions.