Frohschammer, Jakob

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Idealist philosopher; b. Illkhofen, Germany, Jan. 6, 1821; d. Bad Kreuth, Germany, April 14, 1893. He was ordained in 1847 and spent most of his life as a professor of philosophy at the University of Munich. His peculiar form of idealism is based on the conception of imagination, phantasie, as the basic principle of reality. In God this imagination is conscious and subjective and transcends the universe, which is the objective and unconscious manifestation of divine imagination. It is a creative and formative power governing the evolution of the universe and in man becomes individual and conscious as the principle of psychic life. Frohschammer was condemned specifically for attempting to bring within the scope of natural reason the supernatural mysteries of faith, and for asserting the absolute independence of philosophy from the authority of the Church (letter of Pius IX, Gravissimas Inter, Dec. 11, 1862). His failure to retract three of his works led to his suspension in 1862 (see semirationalism). His principal works are: Über den Ursprung der menschlichen Seelen (Munich 1854); Einleitung in die Philosophie (Munich 1858); Die Phantasie als Grundprinzip des Weltprozesses (Munich 1877).

Bibliography: j. g. wÜchner, Frohschammer's Stellung zum Theismus (Paderborn 1913). Philosophen-Lexikon, ed. w. ziegenfuss, 2 v. (Berlin 1949) 1:369370. a. w. ziegler, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, ed. a. vacant, 15 v. (Paris 190350; Tables générales 1951) 16.2:175354. j. hanslmeier, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765).

[j. c. buckley]