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“Utrum idem sint dicere et intelligere sive videre in mente”: Robert Kilwardby, Quaestiones in librum primum Sententiarum

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In his Questions I, qq. 35-36 Sent. Robert Kilwardby asks whether divine understanding (intelligere) is the same as the divine speaking (dicere), as Anselm says in Monologion, ch. 63, just as for us mental speaking (mentis locutio) is the same as the thinker's examination (inspectio cogitantis) or mental seeing (videre in mente). His answer is that neither for us nor for God is the equation correct, because understanding lacks an essential characteristic of speech, i.e. referentiality, and because speaking is active and understanding passive, which is reflected in the meanings (impositiones) and grammatical functions (modi significandi) of the corresponding expressions. Kilwardby does concede in his discussion of the speech of angels in II Sent. q. 56 that when inner speech does occur, and remains internal, it amounts to thought, though with the additional element of referentiality. I suggest that Kilwardby is unwilling accept Augustine's theory that thought is inner speech, as Anselm does, because it would require him to reject Aristotelian-style philosophical psychology.

Affiliations: 1: Louisiana State University

10.1163/156853407X217759
/content/journals/10.1163/156853407x217759
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/content/journals/10.1163/156853407x217759
2007-08-01
2016-09-27

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