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John of St Thomas (1589–1644)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-C019-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved July 15, 2024, from

Article Summary

The seventeenth-century Portuguese Dominican, John of St Thomas or John Poinsot, was a major figure in late scholastic philosophy and theology. Educated at Coimbra and Louvain, he taught both disciplines in Spain: at Madrid, Plasencia and Alcalá. Aspiring to be a faithful disciple of Thomas Aquinas, he published a three-volume Cursus philosophicus thomisticus (Thomistic Philosophical Course) and before he died began the publication of a Cursus theologicus (Theological Course). His philosophical writing was explicitly on logic and natural philosophy. However, in both his philosophical and theological works, he treated many metaphysical, epistemological and ethical issues. His logic is divided into two parts, formal and material. Of particular interest is his semiotic doctrine which appears in the second part. In natural philosophy, he explained Aristotle with a Thomistic slant. While following Aquinas in theology, John at times developed his master’s doctrine along new lines. Both in his own time and after he has had considerable authority within scholasticism, especially for Thomists. Among those whom he has influenced in twentieth-century Thomism are Joseph Gredt, Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, Santiago Ramirez, Jacques Maritain and Yves Simon.

Citing this article:
Doyle, John P.. John of St Thomas (1589–1644), 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-C019-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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