James of Metz

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Dominican theologian; fl. 12951309. Little is known with certainty about him. He is listed in the Stams Catalogue (1315) as author of a commentary on the Sentences. Presumably he belonged to the priory at Metz in the province of France. At Paris he lectured on the Sentences two times, but without becoming a master. The two versions of his commentary have been identified by J. Koch, who showed that the first exists as a reportatio, and that the second is a repetition with additional questions. Dating the second between 1295 and 1303, Koch maintained that he must have been the teacher of du randus of saint-pourÇain. R. Martin and P. Glorieux reject this in favor of a later dating (130809), in which case he could have been a disciple of Durandus. He was more restrained and cautious than Durandus, although many of their minor arguments are identical. Some debatable views were attacked by harvey nedellec in his Correctorium fr. Jacobi, composed after 1302. James maintained a real distinction between nature and Persons in the Trinity; this view, defended by Durandus, was declared heretical by a theological commission of the Dominican Order in 1314.

James presented the arguments against the real distinction of essence and existence without replying to them; he identified mental concepts with the human act of thinking, and followed peter of auvergne on indi viduation by "this" form. On all other important points in scholastic philosophy he followed thomas aquinas, whom he calls "our Doctor." Although he did not always adhere to the teaching of Aquinas, he was neither anti-Thomist nor nominalist (see thomism).

Bibliography: É. h. gilson, A History of Christian Philosophy in the Middle Ages (New York 1955) 773774. j. koch, "Jakob von Metz, OP, der Lehrer des Durandus de S. Porciano, OP," Archives d'histoire doctrinale et littéraire du moyen-âge 4 (1929) 169232. r. m. martin, La Controverse sur le péché originel au début du XIV e siècle (Louvain 1930) 185208.

[j. a. weisheipl]

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James of Metz

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