Matteo Di Giovanni

The status and the of have represented a problem for Aris- totelians of every age. Most clues to ’s conception of logic can be found in the , but what emerges therefrom is a con- ception that is difficult to frame in an unequivocal way: on the one hand, Aristotle’s logical treatises leave us with a body of doctrines and claims that are fairly consistent with an idea of logic as a full-fledged and self-contained discipline, based on a set of fundamental intuitions and developed in accordance with them. Logic appears, in this respect, as a stand-alone of the thinkable and of its conditions in the mind. On the other hand, unlike other in the Aristotelian system, the body of doctrines that is developed in the Organon is not about some particular aspect of the world but, rather, about the way in which the sciences themselves can be approached and developed. In this sense, logic appears to be not so much a science in its own right as an introduction to, and a preparation for, science itself, and is more similar to an instrument than a substantive component of philosophy. A promising way to deal with the status of logic is to analyze its relationship to metaphysics. The two disciplines have in common some essential features, the most important of which is, no doubt, their generality in scope. Logic deals with everything that is think- able and metaphysics deals with everything that exists. Both logic and metaphysics have some claims to universality and both consider the totality of what there is, either in the realm of thought or in the realm of actual . This special connection is already, in itself, a valid to embark on a close comparison between logic and metaphys- ics. However, such a comparison is all the more to the point when it comes to the general interpretation of the relationship between logic and metaphysics that we find in Averroes (1126–1198), the Cordoban Philosopher and Commentator of Aristotle who perpetuated the tra- dition of Arabic in Muslim and in Christian Europe. Averroes considers logic to be not merely related in a special manner to metaphysics, but even fully integrated into metaphysics itself. Logic 54 matteo di giovanni is, to an extent, a part of metaphysics and an essential element in its configuration; conversely, metaphysics is the inquiry that most appro- priates and gives a new orientation to the basic teachings of logic. Metaphysics, in this sense, has a ‘logical’ status. Within an Aristotelian framework, the status of a science is defined in terms of its subject- and demonstrative premises. For Averroes, accordingly, it is in the light of both these components that the logical status of metaphysics can be established. With regard to demonstra- tive premises, Averroes assumes that metaphysics can take some of its starting points from logic and that the doctrines from which logic, as a science, is constituted can occasionally appear within the metaphysical investigation. As regards the subject-matter of metaphysics, Averroes maintains that if it is possible to combine logic and metaphysics at all, this is because logic and metaphysics have the same subject-matter, which is ‘absolute ’ or being without qualification. The characterisation of logic as having the same subject-matter of metaphysics is a crucial aspect of Averroes. The rationale behind this view probably lies in Aristotle’s of demonstration and, particu- larly, in the condition of appropriateness that Aristotle sets for demon- strative premises in the . Its theoretical foundation is represented by one of Averroes’ most distinctive doctrines, namely, that , which is absolute being and the subject-matter of metaphysics, is really identical with species, which is mental being and the subject-matter of logic. Both of these views, that logic shares the same subject-matter of metaphysics, and that metaphysics relies on the doctrines of logic, are combined by Averroes into a coher- ent picture, where philosophical assumptions play a major role along with exegetical concerns. The following analysis will attempt to bring to light the meaning and the philosophical implications of the main issues that are involved in Averroes’ account of logic, of metaphysics, and of their mutual relations.

Different Views of Logic

Occasionally, Aristotle presents his inquiries as conducted in accor- dance with a ‘logical method’ (λογικῶς) and interpreters have long sought to understand what such a ‘logical method’ consists in. On the one hand, it is tempting to understand it as somehow bearing either on logic as a discipline or on Aristotle’s logical treatises; on the