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This book begins with standard ontological topics--such as the nature of existence--and of metaphysics generally, such as the status of universals, form, and accidents. What is the proper subject matter of metaphysical speculation? Are essence and existence really distinct in bodies? Does the body lose its unifying form at death? Can an accident of a substance exist in separation from that substance? Are universals real, and, if so, are they anything more than general concepts? Among the figures it examines are Thomas Aquinas, John Duns Scotus, William of Ockham, Walter Chatton, John Buridan, Dietrich of Freiburg, Robert Holcot, Walter Burley, and the 11th-century Islamic philosopher Ibn-Sina (Avicenna). There is also an emphasis on metaphysics broadly conceived. Thus, additional discussions of connected topics in medieval logic, epistemology, and language provide a fuller account of the range of ideas included in the later medieval worldview.
Charles Bolyard is Associate Professor of Philosophy at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia.
Rondo Keele is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Louisiana Scholars' College in Natchitoches, Louisiana.