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Disputatio (DISPUT 23)

John of Paris
Beyond Royal and Papal Power

C. Jones (ed.)
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XIV+426 p., 156 x 234 mm, 2015
ISBN: 978-2-503-53280-6
Languages: English, Latin
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The first volume of essays dedicated to exploring the thought of the controversial late medieval Dominican scholar John of Paris.

The Dominican scholar John of Paris was one of the most controversial members of the University of Paris in the later Middle Ages. The author of over twenty works, he is best known today for On Royal and Papal Power, a tract traditionally linked to the explosive confrontation that took place between the French king Philip IV and Pope Boniface VIII in the early years of the fourteenth century. Although his role as a royal apologist has been questioned in recent years, John’s tract is often considered the first great defence of the independence of nation-states in the face of the claims to universal authority made by popes and emperors.

Bringing together a team of international scholars with a wide range of expertise, this volume offers the first collection of essays in any language to be dedicated to an exploration of John’s thought. It re-examines his view of the relationship between Church and state, and his conception of political organization. It considers the role played by John’s background as a member of the Dominican order in shaping his ideas and breaks new ground in exploring the relationship between his various works, the origins of his thought, its development, and its legacy.

Table of Contents

Introduction — CHRIS JONES

Part I: Power & Authority

Ecclesiastical Authority and Jurisdiction in the Thought of John of ParisJOSEPH CANNING

Against Empire? John of Paris’s Defence of Territorial Secular Power Considered in the Context of Dante’s and Marsilius of Padua’s Political Theories — BETTINA KOCH

Part II: Dominican & Theologian

Historical Understanding and the Nature of Temporal Power in the Thought of John of Paris — CHRIS JONES

John of Paris and the Apocalypse: The Boundaries of Dominican Scholastic Identity — ANNA MILNE-TAVENDALE

Why did John of Paris write De potestate regia et papali? A Reconsideration — ANDREW A. K. THENG

John of Paris, Henry of Ghent, and the Will as a Rational Appetite — HOLLY HAMILTON-BLEAKLEY

Part III: Concepts & Ideas

John of Paris, Private Property, and the Study of Medieval Political Thought — GERSON MORENO-RIAÑO

John of Paris and the Idea of Peace in the Late Thirteenth and Early Fourteenth Centuries — TAKASHI SHOGIMEN

Debating the Emergence of an Idea: John of Paris and Conciliarism — KARL UBL

Part IV: Reception & Legacy

The Bridle-Maker and the Pope: The Use of Causality in John of Paris’s De potestate regia et papali and in the early De potestate papae TreatisesLIDIA LANZA & MARCO TOSTE

Friar Ludovic of Strassoldo, ‘author’ of the De potestate regia et papali in 1434  — MARTIN J. CABLE

Theology, Sacramental Debates, and Political Thought in John of Paris: The Case of the Eucharist — GIANLUCA BRIGUGLIA


"Overall, this is a rich collection with many intriguing ideas on John of Paris, not just his political thought but also his engagement with the theological issues of his day. The articles can be read in a very different order than the printed by Brepols, allowing readers to make their own connections between the issues raised by the authors." (Thomas Izbicki, in: The Medieval Review 16.02.02)

"Bringing together a team of international scholars with a wide range of expertise, this volume offers the first collection of essays in any language to be dedicated to an exploration of John's thought." (in: Studi Medievali Ser. 3, 57, 1, 2016, p. 458)

« Grâce à la richesse remarquable de ce volume et la créativité de ses approches, l’œuvre de Jean s’éclaire profondément sous un jour nouveau et livre un destin inattendu, inépuisé, une pensée complexe, un héritage considérable, qui n’ont pas encore livré tous leurs secrets. » (Alice Lamy, dans Le Moyen Age, 122/1, 2016, p. 162)

"Ch. Jones hat hier aber einen Sammelband vorgelegt, der eine ganze Reihe höchst bemerkenswerter Forschungsbeiträge enthält, die auch für solche von außerordentlichem Belang sind, deren Forschungsinteresse nicht ebenfalls auf die Person des Johannes von Paris OP, die politische Philosophie des Mittelalters oder die theoretischen Kontroversen um die Wende des 13. zum 14.Jahrhundert ausgerichtet ist. Für diese aber ganz besonders!" (Rolf Schönberger, in: Historische Zeitschrift, 2017, p. 195-196)

“The editor, Chris Jones, introduces his apt volume with a nice survey of John of Paris’s life and of recent scholarship (…) as this John of Paris companion volume will undoubtedly be an important point of reference for future study (…)’ (Patrick Nold, in Catholic Historical Review, 103/3, 2017, 579-580)

“Solche Kontroversen, die auch einige andere Punkte betreffen, machen den Band zu einem überaus anregenden Dokument einer lebendigen Forschungsdiskussion.” (Georg Jostkleigrewe, in Deutschen Archiv, 74/2, 2018, p. 815)



Interest Classification:
Religion (including History of Religion) & Theology
Christian Church : religious orders
Orders of Friars
Christian Theology & Theologians
Scholastic (c. 1200-1500)
Social Sciences
Political Theory
History of political theory
Medieval & Renaissance History (c.400-1500)
Medieval European history (400-1500) : main subdisciplines
Political & institutional history

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