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Introduction

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Chapter Summary

The Aristotelian Corpus includes a work entitled 'Peri pneumatos', usually cited by its Latin title 'De spiritu'. References to this text are rare in the modern era. Aristotle's authorship has been almost generally denied since the 15th century. The 'innate pneuma' is a central subject in Aristotle's biological works. In his well-known 1913 article W. Jaeger also discusses De spiritu. Briefly summarizing the contents of De spiritu, he stresses how incoherent its composition is. The opening question of De spiritu-how does the innate pneuma maintain itself and grow?-is dealt with rather tentatively in the first two chapters. It is astonishing how confidently Jaeger spoke in his 1913 article and how since then every student of De spiritu has followed in his footsteps, while on the other hand many other scholars have neglected the work, because they accepted Jaeger's authority without question.

Keywords:Aristotle; De spiritu; W. Jaeger

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