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James of Viterbo, Bl.


Italian Augustinian theologian, known by the scholastic titles of Doctor gratiosus, Doctor inventivus, and Doctor speculativus; b. Viterbo, c. 1255; d. Naples, 1308. A member of the Capocci family, he joined the Hermits of St. Augustine when he was very young (c. 1270), and he acquired the elements of learning at the order's house in Viterbo. From 1275 to 1282 he studied philosophy and theology in Paris. After a few years in Italy, where he had various administrative responsibilities, he was again sent to Paris, this time to enroll in the university and to succeed giles of rome, the order's first master in theology. In May 1288 James had the title of bachelor. In April 1293 he became a master and succeeded Giles as regent master from 1293 to 1300. During his first years of teaching he held quodlibetal discussions and many quaestiones disputatae, notably 32 De praedicamentis in divinis; seven De verbo; 50 De Spiritu Sancto; De animatione caelorum; and De angelorum compositione. Directed by the general chapter of Siena in 1295 to devote himself especially to the study of Sacred Scripture, he composed commentaries on Matthew, Luke, and Paul that are now lost. Returning to Italy as definitor to the general chapter of Naples in 1300, he was put in charge of the studium generale founded in that city. Between March and September 1302, he composed and dedicated to the pope the earliest known treatise on the Church, De regimine Christiano. On Sept. 3, 1302, boniface viii created him bishop of Benevento; and on Dec. 12, 1303, he appointed him archbishop of Naples. At the height of the struggle between Boniface VIII and philip iv, King of France, James strongly defended the rights of the Holy See, keeping always on a theological level. As archbishop he was actively engaged in the reconstruction of his cathedral. He was beatified on June 4, 1914.

Bibliography: p. glorieux, Répertoire des maîtres en théologie de Paris au XIII siècle (Paris 193334) 2:309312. d. gutiÉrrez, "De B. Jacobi Viterbiensis vita, operibus et doctrina theologica," Analecta Augustiniana (Rome 1939). p. glorieux, La Littérature quodlibétique (Kain 1925) 1:214217. t. osborne, "James of Viterbo's Rejection of Giles of Rome's Arguments for the Natural Love of God over Self," Augustiniana 49 (1999) 235249. m. gossiaux, "James of Viterbo on the Relationship between Essence and Existence," Augustiniana 49 (1999) 73107. e. ypma, ed. "Jac. De Viterbo, Quaestiones de divinis praedicamentis," Augustiniana 46 (1996) 339369, 48 (1998) 131163, 49 (1999) 323366.

[p. glorieux]

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