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Studia Neoaristotelica

Volume 2, Issue 1, 2005

A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism

Tomáš Nejeschleba
Pages 67-82

Lutheránský aristotelismus – Philipp Melanchthon
A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism

This article summarises the basic features of Melanchthon’s approach to Aristotle’s philosophy in the areas of logic, ethics and natural philosophy. Although Melanchthon builds upon the humanistic ideal of purifying classical heritage, his Aristotelianism should not be viewed as ‘pure’. His conception of natural knowledge (notitiae naturales) could be regarded as a significant non-Aristotelian element of his philosophy. The view consequently penetrates his logic, ethics as well as epistemology. Primarily, however, the reason behind his reception of Aristotle is a defence of Luther’s views: the aims of logic and rhetoric lie in the exegesis of the Bible within the context of the principle of ‘ Sola Scriptura’; he rejects the medieval concept of felicity and puts antropology into the dialectics of Law and Gospel; the aim of natural philosophy is the exposition of the existence of God’s Providence. Melanchthon’s reception of Aristotle is thus influenced by the theology of the Reformation to such an extent, that we might refer to it as Lutheran Aristotelianism.

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