The anonymous Parisian prologue to Averroes’ De substantia orbis from the end of the 13th century


  • Łukasz TOMANEK


Fernand of Spain; University of Paris; philosophy of nature; textual criticism; medieval manuscripts


The article examines the anonymously preserved prologue to Averroes’ De substantia orbis dating to the end of the 13th century (manuscript Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek Clm 14246, ff. 16r–v, 19rb) and presents its edition. Along with commentaries by Fernand of Spain and Giles of Orléans (lost), this work is a rare witness of the still scarcely known commenting practice of Averroes’ work at the Faculty of Arts in Paris in this period. The codicological and paleographical examination conducted on the manuscript led to establishing the approximate dating and origin of the prologue. Additionally, the doctrinal analysis allowed us to place this opusculum within the context of other similar prologues and commentaries produced in this period. Of significant importance are similarities between the anonymous author and Fernand of Spain, whose prologue to his commentary on De substantia orbis provides an important context for the Anonymous Monacensis. Both works often employ the same examples and consider De substantia orbis the supplement to De caelo et mundo, which was an unusual addition to traditionally established divisio librorum naturalium.