Raymond of Sabunde

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Philosopher; b. Barcelona; d. Toulouse, 1436. Having degrees in arts, medicine, and theology, he taught theology at the University of Toulouse, and in time was ordained a priest. His only work is the Theologia naturalis, or Liber creaturarum, written between 1434 and 1436 and widely circulated throughout Europe. According to its author, the aim of this work is to study the nature of man as well as the things prerequisite to this study, i.e., natures subject to man. God has placed at man's disposal two books, created nature and the Bible, the latter being given to him when, blinded by sin, he could not read the former. Since both books come from God, they cannot obliterate, falsify, or contradict each other. As a result, philosophy is the study of nature, especially human nature. Man, then, should be the first object of knowledge, and God should be the end to which all human thoughts and actions are ordered. Because Sabunde's claim that he encountered in the study of nature all the truths contained in Sacred Scripture was taken to be equivalent to saying that revelation is unnecessary, the Council of Trent put the prologue of his work on the Index.

Bibliography: c. c. l. kleiber, De Raimundo quem vocant de Sabunde vita et scriptis (Berlin 1856). f. holberg, De theologia naturali R. de Sabunde (Halle 1860). t. and j. carreras y artau, Historia de la filosofía española: Filosofía cristiana de los siglos XIII al XV, 2 v. (Madrid 193943) 2:101174, with extensive bibliog.

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Raymond of Sabunde

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