Encyclopedia of Medieval Philosophy

Living Edition
| Editors: Henrik Lagerlund

Berthold of Moosburg

  • Irene ZavatteroEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1151-5_82-2


Berthold of Moosburg was a fourteenth-century German Dominican. He was called to direct the Dominican studium in Cologne in 1335, where he was involved in resolving the crisis caused by the conviction of Meister Eckhart’s doctrines (1329). The doctrinal solution proposed by Berthold is contained in his commentary on Proclus’s Elements of Theology (Expositio super elementationem theologicam Procli), the only medieval commentary on Proclus, a veritable summa of Neoplatonism. Berthold’s project was to promote the return to the Neoplatonic tradition of the German Dominicans, dating back to Albertus Magnus. He demonstrated that the Albertine school was an autonomous and unitary cultural identity that had its roots in ancient wisdom, of which Proclus, according to Berthold, was the most outstanding exponent. Berthold sees in the Greek diadochus a “divine man” who could scan the divine properties, which are present in the totality of the real world, and therefore ascend to God only by means of the natural reason. In the same way, according to Berthold, the philosopher who studies Proclian theorems performs a cognitive ascent which leads him to the contemplation of God. This is possible by virtue of the presence in man of a divine faculty, i.e., the “One of the soul.”

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dipartimento di Lettere e FilosofiaUniversità di TrentoTrentoItaly