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Alexander of Hales

Alexander of Hales, d. 1245, English scholastic philosopher, called the Unanswerable Doctor by his fellow scholastics. He was a Franciscan and a lecturer at the Univ. of Paris. His Summa universae theologiae was the first systematic exposition of Christian doctrine to introduce Aristotle as a prime authority. His eclectic work also contains elements of Neoplatonism and Augustinian and Arabic ideas. Alexander held that all created things, spiritual as well as corporeal, are made up of matter and form. This teaching became the central feature of Franciscan scholasticism and an important influence on St. Thomas Aquinas.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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