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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: December 2020

Chapter 1 - Introduction


The introduction presents the nature and scope of De mundo and explains the objectives of the present volume. De mundo is a protreptic work aiming to present philosophy as a study of the universe and its relation to God. For that reason, it sets out to explain the world in terms of what makes it an orderly arrangement, a kosmos. The work’s central thesis is that the orderly arrangement of the universe is due to God and that it is hence crucial to have a proper conception of God and his causal relation to the universe in order to fully appreciate the universe, its structure and the phenomena that occur in it. Unlike most scholarly work done on this text, the present volume does not focus on the question of authenticity and dating, but on its content and philosophy. However, the introduction does explain at some length why De mundo should not be ascribed to Aristotle, although the author clearly aimed to present a picture of the world and God that is essentially Aristotelian. The introduction is accompanied by an overview of the argument presented in De mundo.