Encyclopedia of Renaissance Philosophy

Living Edition
| Editors: Marco Sgarbi

D’Ailly, Pierre

Born: 1350, Compiègne
Died: 9 August 1420, Avignon
  • Fabrizio ContiEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-02848-4_637-1


Pierre d’Ailly was a theologian, philosopher, and churchman playing a pivotal role in Church reform at the time of the Great Schism and especially at the Council of Constance. He had an intense public career, becoming Chancellor of the University of Paris, confessor to King Charles VI, a cardinal of the Roman Church, and papal legate, as well as bright intellectual interests spanning theology, philosophy, astrology, cosmology, and geography and producing more than 150 writings. In particular, his Imago mundi (1410) was read and annotated by Cristopher Columbus, who derived from it the idea of the practicability of his enterprise.

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Primary Literature

  1. Edmond Buron (Ed.). 1930. Ymago Mundi de Pierre d’Ailly, 3 vols. Paris: Maisonneuve Frères.Google Scholar
  2. Pierre D’Ailly. 1706. De materia concilii generalis, Tractatus super reformatione ecclesiae, Tractatus de ecclesiae autoritate. In Jean Gerson. Opera omnia, ed. Louis E. Dupin. 5 vols. Antwerp: Sumptibus societatis, Vol. 2.Google Scholar
  3. Petrus de Alliaco. 2013. Questiones super primum, tertium et quartum librum Sententiarum. I: Principia et questio circa Prologum. Cura et studio Monica Brinzei. Turnhout: Brepols.Google Scholar

Secondary Literature

  1. Ackerman Smoller, L. 1994. History, prophecy, and the stars: The Christian astrology of Pierre D’Ailly, 1350–1420. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Bouloux, N. 2011. Pour une nouvelle lecture de l’Imago mundi de Pierre d’Ailly. Représentations et Conceptions de l’Espace dans la Culture Médiévale. Colloque Fribourgeois 2009: 237–264.Google Scholar
  3. Courtenay, W.J. 1971. Covenant and causality in Pierre d’Ailly. Speculum 46 (1): 94–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Guenée, B. 1987. Entre l’Eglise et l’Etat. Quatre vies de prélats français à la fin du Moyen Âge (XIII–XVe siècles). Paris: Gallimard. Ch. 3.Google Scholar
  5. Miethke, J. 1963. Peter v. Ailly. In Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, vol. VIII. Freiburg: Herder.Google Scholar
  6. Oakley, F. 1964. Pierre D’Ailly and Papal Infallibility. Medieval Studies 26: 353–358.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Raymond, I.W. 1953. D’Ailly’s Epistola diaboli Leviathan. Church History 22 (3): 181–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Ribordy, O. 2011. “Auctoritas magnorum doctorum”. Usages de l’autorité magistrale par Pierre d’Ailly. RSR 85: 325–351.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of History and HumanitiesJohn Cabot UniversityRomeItaly

Section editors and affiliations

  • Violaine Giacomotto-Charra
    • 1
  1. 1.Université Bordeaux MontaignePessacFrance