From Personal Duties Towards Personal Rights: Late Medieval by Arthur P. Monahan

By Arthur P. Monahan

Carrying on with the old research started in "Consent, Coercion, and Limit", Arthur Monahan examines Western political inspiration through the interval c.1300-1600. targeting the innovations of well known consent, illustration, restrict, and resistance to tyranny as crucial gains of contemporary theories of parliamentary democracy, Monahan exhibits a continuity in use of those strategies around the alleged divide among the center a long time and the Renaissance and Reformation. all of the 4 components of the publication offers with a selected ancient occasion or phenomenon that offers a spotlight for the political writings of that interval. half 1 examines the past due medieval northern Italian city-state republics and the humanist depiction in their type of polity. half 2 experiences the felony (principally canonical) and political suggestion in the back of the advance of a thought of renowned consent and restricted authority hired to unravel the good Schism within the Western church. half three describes 16th-century Spanish neo-scholastic political writings and their program to Reformation Europe and Spanish colonial enlargement within the New global. This paintings could be of particular curiosity to highbrow historians in addition to historians of political rules and political theories and scholars in historical past, political technology, and non secular experiences.

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A number of other difficulties arise for the intellectual historian of politics. Proceeding in the first instance from a set of texts may seem to scant the history of actual political institutions whose development would have had a direct impact on political thinking at the time: the changing relationships between monarch and parliament (or estates general) and monarch and courts in England and France are cases in point. The intent to offer a coherent history of ideas and the need to draw some boundaries around the material that can be included in a single monograph have led me simply to stipulate these and other historical data as essential background, and leave it at that.

To learn them at all we must do two things: offer as accurate a description of the past as it is possible to provide from this distance without reading contemporary concerns and thought patterns into it; and simultaneously address our own questions to the past so that it can teach us, if we are prepared to learn. Western Europe in the fourteenth century saw the beginnings of what we understand today as nation-states in France and England and, somewhat later, in Spain. In central Europe and the Italian peninsula, however, the scene was much different and reflected more a continuation of feudal conditions and vassalage in small and relatively isolated pockets under the marginal, if not largely symbolic, control of distant political jurisdictions.

7. Ptolemy's work remains attached to the Thomistic text even in one recent modern edition, without any clear indication of the difference in authorship: see "De regimine principum," in Thomas Aquinas, Opuscula omnia, ed. Perrier. Another modern edition, however, puts the record straight: Thomas Aquinas, Opuscula philosophica, ed. Spiazzi, p. 2806. My translation of the Ptolemy text will appear shortly. 8. Ptolemy, De regimine prindpum, pp. 187, 381. 12 The work was damned from the moment of its appearance by ecclesiastical authorities for its direct subordination of church to state and later praised for precisely the same thing.

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