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Ptolémée de Lucques (v. 1240-1327) et la genèse de la philosophie politique européenne
Ptolemy of Lucca (ca. 1240-1327) and the genesis of European political philosophy
Fellowships for prospective researchers
Fachbereich Philosophie und Geschichtswissenschaften Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität
Institution of higher education
Institution abroad - IACH
01.08.2011 - 31.07.2012
All Disciplines (5)
Religious studies, Theology
General history (without pre-and early history)
politics; latin middle ages; philosophy; republicanism; rome; hierocracy
Lay Summary (English)
This project primarily aims at bringing to light Ptolemy of Lucca's original and pioneering contribution to the birth of systematic debate on the major questions and concepts of Western Political Philosophy.
Political thought had become a discipline in its own right after the Latin translation of Aristotle's "Politics" in the middle of the thirteenth century and its introduction into the university curriculum, and it developed considerably during the great historical conflict between temporal powers (kings and emperors) and spiritual ones (above all, the popes).
Ptolemy of Lucca, a Dominican philosopher and theologian active in the late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries, participated actively in this debate starting in 1280, defending unequivocally the supremacy of papal over imperial power. Not only does Ptolemy defend his position with extensive argumentation, following the scholastic method of arguing "pro et contra", but he also brings in elements that have been traditionally called pro-republican, specifically in connection with the ancient Roman Republic and the city-republics of late-thirteenth century Italy.
While in themselves Ptolemy's writings deserve close philosophical study, their place as one of the founders of the tradition of political writings, coupled with this unexpected and unparalleled usage of republican themes, makes such a study imperative.
Therefore, my project consists in two distinct but complementary parts: on the one hand, the preparation of a critical edition, with translation and commentary, of Ptolemy's first treatise, the "De iurisdictione imperii et auctoritate summi pontificis"; on the other hand, the development of a doctrinal study of Ptolemy's thought in relation to contemporary or later thinkers, such as Engelbert of Admont, Jean Quidort, Dante Alighieri and Marsilius of Padua.
Direct link to Lay Summary
Last update: 21.02.2013
Responsible applicant and co-applicants
Département de Philosophie Faculté des Lettres Université de Fribourg
Type of contribution
Title of article or contribution
XIII International Congress of Medieval Philosophy SIEPM
La philosophie médiévale in utramque partem. Deuxième journée d'études, LEM, EPHE
Montagskolloquium, Institut für Philosophie, Goethe Universität
Workshop-Institut für Philosophie, Goethe Universität
Santa Maria Novella et la commune de Florence (1293-1313/4). Enquête philosophique sur les écrits politiques des dominicains florentins contemporains de Dante