Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

2011 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Lagerlund

Proclus, Arabic

  • Elvira Wakelnig
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-9729-4_420


The name of the Greek philosopher Proclus figures quite prominently in the Arabic philosophical literature. However, his doctrines are often changed beyond recognition. Fourteen Proclean works were allegedly translated into Arabic and Syriac, but today none of these translations is known to be extant in its entirety. Among them, his Proofs that the World is Eternal and his Elements of Theology were the most influential ones. The latter was reworked in several recensions and became a main source for Neoplatonic thought in Arabic: the One identified with pure Being was established as the first principle and the cause of everything else; the concept of emanation and creatio mediante intelligentia was expounded; the hierarchy of being was arranged in the scheme One – Intellect – Soul – Nature, and the dichotomy between spiritual and corporeal world was stressed.

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Primary Sources

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elvira Wakelnig
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Classics and Ancient HistoryWarwick UniversityCoventryUK