Friday, March 18, 2011

Thomas Aquinas, De Ente et Essentia

Tommaso d'Aquino [Thomas Aquinas]
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Medieval Era)


I   II   III   IV   V   VI   VII

PROOEMIUM [Introduction]

Quia parvus error in principio magnus est in fine, secundum Philosophum in I Caeli et Mundi, ens autem et essentia sunt quae primo intellectu concipiuntur,
1[Because a little mistake in the beginning is a great one in the end, according to Philosophus' Heavens and Earth 1, but anyway, people have begun to explore what existence and essence are with their top intellect,]

ut dicit Avicenna in principio suae Metaphysicae, ideo ne ex eorum ignorantia errare contingat, ad horum difficultatem aperiendam dicendum est quid nomine essentiae et entis significetur et quomodo in diversis inveniatur et quomodo se habeat ad intentiones logicas, scilicet genus, speciem et differentiam.
2 [And the result is that Avicenna, in the beginning of her Metaphysics, says, for that reason, that one should not wander astray in the ignorance of these men, and, in order to reveal the difficulty this men had, one must explain what exactly the name of 'essence' and 'existence' mean, and how one can discover them in different cases, and how one can understand their logical precepts, such as their types, appearance, and differences]

[I]. Quia vero ex compositis simplicium cognitionem accipere debemus et ex posterioribus in priora devenire, ut, a facilioribus incipientes, convenientior fiat disciplina, ideo ex significatione entis ad significationem essentiae procedendum est.
3 [Since we ought to truly accept the knowledge of simple concepts from the studies they have composed, and to review previous information after later information, so, as we begin from easier concepts, let our discipline become progressively simpler, and therefore we should proceed first from the meaning of 'existence' onto the meaning of 'essence.]

Sciendum est igitur quod, sicut in V Metaphysicae Philosophus dicit, ens per se dicitur dupliciter, uno modo quod dividitur per decem genera, alio modo quod significat propositionum veritatem.
4 [So we must understand that, just as Philosophus' Metaphysics 5 states, 'essence' has a dual nature: in the first respect, it is divided into ten types; in the second, that it signifies the truth of our intentions.]

 Horum autem differentia est quia secundo modo potest dici ens omne illud, de quo affirmativa propositio formari potest, etiam si illud in re nihil ponat.
5 [However, their difference is such that every part of one's existence can be declared, from which some actionable intention can take form, even if it does not take place.]