Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

2011 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Lagerlund

Bonaventure

  • Matthew J. Pereira
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-9729-4_91

Abstract

Bonaventure O.F.M. (c. 1217-July 15, 1274) was the lead representative of thirteenth century Augustinianism. Bonaventure was a traditional Augustinian; however, he was also significantly influenced by Aristotelianism. Among other intellectual movements, Augustinianism and Aristotelianism significantly shaped Bonaventure’s search for wisdom (sapientia). The Bonaventurean synthesis attempted to account for a wide breadth of sensible and spiritual realities, ranging from God, humanity, morality, and nature. Essentially, Bonaventure favored faith and theology over reason and philosophy. However, Bonaventure’s approach was all embracing, he was committed to employing all fields of knowledge in his pursuit of knowledge. One of Bonaventure’s most significant accomplishments was his appropriation and advancement of Anselm of Canterbury’s (1033–1109) ontological argument. He was the first of the thirteenth-century theologians to vigorously engage Anselm’s influential ontology. In his Disputed Questions on the Mystery of the Trinity, Bonaventure advances his most concentrated argument for the existence of God. In this treatise, Bonaventure argues for three ways, or proofs of the existence of God, which involved the nature of the soul, being and truth, or goodness. The three ways, when fully explicated and understood, will lead the seeker to the indubitable truth of God.

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Bibliography

Primary Sources

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English Translations of Bonaventure

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Journal Articles

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew J. Pereira
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ReligionColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA