Beyond Aristotelian Political Science: Scientia Civilis and Romanism in Marsiglio of Padua’s Thought

  • Cary J. NedermanEmail author

It is a widely, although not universally, accepted view that the early fourteenth-century political philosopher Marsiglio of Padua (also known by the Latinized version of his name, Marsilius) was a paragon of medieval scholastic Aristotelianism, even if the conclusions he drew from this source were utterly unorthodox. Writing in the canonical Cambridge History of Medieval Political Thought, Jeannine Quillet expresses the conventional wisdom: ‘Marsilius remains faithful to the Aristotelian tradition, tracing the origins and development of the perfect community, or city, after the manner of Aristotle in the Politics. … The perfect civil community, in my reading of Marsilius, is a natural entity in the Aristotelian tradition. … All his arguments about the constitution of the perfect community still derive in all their essential elements from Aristotelian naturalism.’1Such naturalism, in turn, authorized a core insight of Aristotle’s political philosophy (and the moral ideas with which...


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceTexas A&M UniversityCollege StationUSA

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