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Argyros, Isaac


Antipalamite, Greek monk, theologian, and astronomer; d. c. 1375. Although Argyros followed the inspiration of Theodore Metochites and Gregoras in pursuit of astronomy and mathematics, he also proved himself to be a theologian and powerful polemist. Argyros ranged himself with Nicephorus Gregoras against gregory palamas and Emperor John VI Cantacuzenus in the controversy over hesychasm. He seems to have accepted the theological method of barlaam of calabria in his principal treatise against Palamism, written probably after 1360. He is also credited with a monograph on the teaching of Barlaam against Theodore dexios and is probably the author of a tome published by the patriarch of Antioch (c. 1370). Two further opuscules against Palamism are also attributed to him.

Besides theological treatises, Argyros wrote numerous scientific tracts that are still in manuscript: Apparatus astrolabii (Vatican), De reducendis triangulis (Oxford), De reducendo calculo astronomicorum (Vienna), Methodus Geodesiae (Escorial), Methodus solarium et lunarium (Leyden), and Geometriae aliquot problemata (Paris). His chief scientific works concern the sun and the moon cycles and the 12 winds. It is probable that Argyros wrote a short commentary on the works of Ptolemy relating in particular to the defective chapter of the Harmonics, a work to which Nicephorus had also given attention.

Bibliography: g. mercati, Notizie di Procoro e Demetrio Cidone (Studi e Testi 56; 1931) 229242, 270275. j. f. mountford, "The Harmonics of Ptolemy and the Lacuna in II, 14," Transaction and Proceedings of the American Philological Association 57 (1926) 7195, esp. 95. Kirche und theologische Literatur im byzantinischen Reich 729730. m. candal, "Un escrito trinitario de Isaac Argiro en la contienda palamítica del siglo XIV," Orientalia Christiana periodica 22 (1956) 92137; "Argiro contra Dexio," ibid. 23 (1957) 80113. m. jugie, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique 11.2:1806. e. von ivÁnka, "Die philosophische und geistesgeschichtliche Bedeutung des Palamismus," Studi bizantini 7 (1953) 124129.

[g. luznycky]

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