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Averroes’ Commentary On Aristotle’S De Generatione Animalium And Its Use In Two Thirteenth-Century Hebrew Encyclopedias

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses some features of Averroes' procedure as a commentator in De generatione animalium, and examines how the Hebrew encyclopedists in turn transmit his commentary. Before investigating these questions, however, it is worthwhile to briefly discuss the category to which this commentary belongs: that of the Epitomes or that of the Middle Commentaries. The chapter discusses Averroes' refutation of the theory that semen originates from all the parts of the body, and his discussion of spontaneous generation. The discussion on spontaneous generation reveals a different picture, both with respect to Averroes' comments on the Aristotelian text and with respect to its coverage by the Hebrew encyclopedists. Turning now to the Hebrew encyclopedias, it can be noted that both provide more information on the issue under consideration than on the pangenesis theory.

Keywords: Aristotelian text; Averroes' commentary; De generatione animalium; pangenesis theory; spontaneous generation; thirteenth-century Hebrew encyclopedias



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