Book Series Aristoteles Latinus, vol. VII 1.1 & VII 2



1. Translatio Vetus (fasc. primus); 2. Translatio Vaticana

Fernand Bossier, Josef Brams (eds)

  • Pages: 126 p.
  • Size:170 x 255 mm
  • Language(s):Latin, French
  • Publication Year:1990

  • ISBN: 978-90-04-09337-9
  • Hardback
  • Available


Fernand Bossier († 2006) was professor of Greek at the University of Antwerp and senior researcher at the De Wulf-Mansion Centre for Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy, KU Leuven, Belgium.

Jozef Brams  († 2003) was the scientific secretary and later director of the Aristoteles Latinus project at the De Wulf-Mansion Centre for Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy, KU Leuven, Belgium. 


Aristotle's main physical treatise was one of the standard books which deeply influenced Western science and philosophy. From the twelfth century onwards it was translated several times into Latin during the Middle Ages and it was read and commented upon constantly in schools and universities. Five medieval Latin versions have been preserved, two translated from the Arabic and three directly from the Greek. The Arab-Latin versions were made by Gerard of Cremona in the twelfth century and Michael Scot in the thirteenth century.

The oldest Greek-Latin translation of the Physics stems from James of Venice (1). As in the case of the Posterior Analytics, the manuscript tradition of the text reveals the presence of two versions, which again have not been edited separately, the second version having been displayed in the critical apparatus. The first volume of the edition, which contains the preface, includes a reprint of the edition of the so-called Translatio Vaticana (2). The provenience of this anonymous and fragmentary version is puzzling. As has been suggested recently, it might have had its origins in the circle of Stephen of Antioch.

The preface, written in French, gives a detailed description of the manuscript tradition and of the two main types of text it contains. It also discusses the relation between the Physica vetus and the Physica Vaticana.