THE THESIS OF THIS PAPER is that Alessandro Achillini (1463-1512), Professor of Philosophy and/or Medicine at the University of Bologna, was instrumental in bringing about a brief revival at Bologna in interest in the writings and some doctrines of the fourteenth-century English Franciscan philosopher and theologian William of Ockham. The order of topics is as follows: first, I shall allude very briefly to the state of Ockhamistic research as it applies to Bologna at the time of Achillini's activity, as far as I understand it. Second, I shall sketch briefly Achillini's life and career. Third and finally, I shall illustrate his importance in an Ockhamistic revival by studying certain logical and metaphysical topics treated in Achillini's writings and by comparing and contrasting his opinions on these issues with those of Ockham. A reader of this paper has kindly suggested that one should introduce this subject by sketching the influence of Ockham in Italy. As valuable as this suggestion is, I for one am not qualified to do so. To the best of my knowledge, many of the critical editions and monographic works on which such a study should be made are still important desiderata. In spite of recent work, much remains to be done about the influence of Ockham in Italy from 1350 to 1500. To make unsupported generalizations about this or that presumed influence of Ockham at Bologna does not seem to me to be sound. What I can assure the reader is that I have traced certain topics Achillini treated; some important doctrines seem to reflect Ockham's views and others do not. More important, for the former, I could seldom find immediate predecessors to whom Achiilini might have been indebted, x There is a different sort of evidence to support AchiUini's alleged 'Ockhamism' and his efforts in introducing some 'Ockhamistic' doctrines at .Bologna, namely, the fact that Marcus de Benevento dedicates one of Ockham's works to Achillini and in his letter of dedication he seems to thank Achillini for his efforts in introducing him to Ockhamistic ideas. 2 It is also of importance that Marcus edited two other works of Ockham or three in all and published them at Bologna between the years 1494 and 1498, during Achillini's academic career at Bologna.
Journal of the History of Philosophy