Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

Living Edition
| Editors: Henrik Lagerlund

Richard Brinkley

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1151-5_436-2


Richard Brinkley, OFM (fl. c. 1350) was an English logician and theologian of the middle of the fourteenth century. Among his works, only a Summa logicae and some fragments of theological works are known to us. Brinkley is a realist philosopher (he acknowledges real universals and genuine propositional significates), although his position is much more moderate than that of Burley or Wyclif, for example. Most of his criticisms in the Summa are directed against Ockham, although he agrees with him on some doctrinal issues, like for example the thesis of semantic subordination of written and spoken language to mental language. Brinkley’s philosophical orientation is characterized by the tension between the explicitly formulated methodological aim of segregating logic and metaphysics, and the philosophical necessity of considering them both.


Semantic Subordination Summa Logicae Ockham Propositional Significate Theological Works 
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Primary Sources

    Edited Sections of Brinkley’s Works

      Theological Works

      1. Commentum super Sententias (= Abbreviatio Stephani Galdeti). (1990). Kaluza, Z. (Ed.), L’œuvre théologique de Richard Brinkley, O.F.M. Archives d’Histoire Doctrinale et Littéraire du Moyen Age 64:169–273, 226–239.Google Scholar
      2. Quaeritur utrum potentia volitiva hic in via eodem actu quo utitur creatura libere fruatur trinitate benedicta (= Commentum super Sententias, quaestio 3). (1990). Kaluza, Z. (Ed.), L’œuvre théologique de Richard Brinkley, O.F.M. Archives d’Histoire Doctrinale et Littéraire du Moyen Age 64:169–273, 214–222.Google Scholar
      3. Utrum Deus praecise eodem modo principiet ad extra sicut principiat ad intra (= short version of the first of the so-called Quaestiones magnae). (1990). Kaluza, Z. (Ed.), L’œuvre théologique de Richard Brinkley, O.F.M. Archives d’Histoire Doctrinale et Littéraire du Moyen Age 64:169–273, 223–224; Two short versions (by Stephanus Galdetus) of that same question, as well as of two further Quaestiones magnae (namely: Utrum simpliciter primum productum ad extra sit alicuius creaturae actualis existentia and Utrum cum omni modo agendi dei ad extra stet quod voluntas creata sit in agendo contradictione libera) are also edited by Kaluza (ibid., 240–252, resp. 240–242, 243–245, and 246–252).Google Scholar

      Logical Works

      1. De insolubilibus (= Summa logicae VI). (1969). An anonymous fourteenth century treatise on insolubles (Text and study, ed.: Spade, V. P.). Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies.Google Scholar
      2. De obligationibus (= Summa logicae VII). (1995). Richard Brinkley’s obligationes. A late fourteenth century treatise on the logic of disputation (ed.: Spade V. P., Wilson, G. A.). Münster: Aschendorff.Google Scholar
      3. De propositione in genere (= Summa logicae, V.1). (2004). L. Cesalli (Ed.). Richard Brinkley O.F.M. De propositione (Summa logicae V.1, 1–5). Archives d’Histoire Doctrinale et Littéraire du Moyen Age, 71, 203–254.Google Scholar
      4. De significato propositionis (= Summa logicae, V.2). (1987). Richard Brinkley’s theory of sentential reference (ed.: and trans. Fitzgerald, M. J.). Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
      5. De universalibus (= Summa logicae II). (2008). L. Cesalli (Ed.). Richard Brinkley contra dialecticae haereticos (Summa logicae, II). Une conception métaphysico-logique de l’universel. Documenti e studi sulla tradizione filosofica medievale, 19, 277–333.Google Scholar
      6. (A complete edition of the Summa logicae is prepared by Cesalli L and Lonfat J.)Google Scholar

Secondary Sources

  1. Ashworth, E. J. (1989). La sémantique du xiv e siècle vue à travers cinq traités oxoniens sur les obligationes. Cahiers d’épistémologie n 8915.Google Scholar
  2. Ashworth, E. J., & Spade, P. V. (1992). Logic in late medieval Oxford. In J. I. Catto & R. Evans (Eds.), The history of the university of oxford (Vol. II, pp. 35–63). Oxford: Clarendon. esp. 49.Google Scholar
  3. Cesalli, L. (2002). Some 14th-century realist theories of the proposition. In H. S. Gill (Ed.), Signification in language and culture (pp. 83–118). Shimla: Indian Institute of Advanced Study.Google Scholar
  4. Cesalli, L. (2003). La sémantique des syncatégorèmes chez Walter Burley (1275–1344) et Richard Brinkley (fl. 1365). Histoire, Epistémologie, Langage 25/II, pp. 115–144.Google Scholar
  5. Cesalli, L. (2004). Ubi est propositio? Richard Brinkley sur les lieux de la proposition (Summa logicae V.1). In A. Maierù & L. Valente (Eds.). Medieval theories on assertive and non assertive language. Acts of the 14th European symposium on medieval logic and semantics, Rome, 11–15 June 2002. Firenze: Olschki.Google Scholar
  6. Cesalli, L. (2007). Le réalisme propositionnel. Sémantique et ontologie des propositions chez Jean Duns Scot, Gauthier Burley, Richard Brinkley et Jean Wyclif (pp. 241–309). Paris: Vrin.Google Scholar
  7. Cesalli, L. (2013). Richard Brinkley on Supposition, Vivarium 51 (pp. 275–303) [also published in Egbert Bos, P. (Ed.). (2013). Medieval supposition theory revisited (pp. 275–303). Leiden: Brill].Google Scholar
  8. Cesalli, L. (2015). Anti-Ockhamist logical treatises: Richard Brinkley and the Pseudo-Campsall. In C. Rode (Ed.), A companion to responses to Ockham (pp. 79–94). Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  9. Cesalli, L. (2017). Pseudo-Campsall and Richard Brinkley on universals. In F. Amerini & L. Cesalli (Eds.), Universals in the fourtheenth century (pp. 225–240). Pisa: Edizioni della Normale (forthcoming).Google Scholar
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  15. Kaluza, Z. (1990). L’œuvre théologique de Richard Brinkley, O.F.M. Archives d’Histoire Doctrinale et Littéraire du Moyen Age, 64, 169–273.Google Scholar
  16. Kaluza, Z. (1992). Richard Brinkley. In A. Jacob (dir.). L’encyclopédie philosophique universelle (pp. 804–805). Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.Google Scholar
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  19. Spade, P. V. (1993). Opposing and responding, a new look at position. Medioevo, XIX, 233–270.Google Scholar
  20. Spade, P. V. (1994). The logic of sit verum in Richard Brinkley and William of Ockham. Franciscan Studies, 54, 227–250.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Spade, P. V., & Wilson, G. A. (1991). Richard Brinkley’s de insolubilibus: A preliminary assessment. Rivista di storia della. Filosofia, 46, 245–256.Google Scholar

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of GenevaGenevaSwitzerland