Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Medieval Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Larry J. Simon

Second Advisor

Dr. E. Rozanne Elder

Third Advisor

Dr. Rand Johnson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only


This thesis studies the life and writings of Ferrarius Catalanus, an early Dominican theologian, in the historical and intellectual context of the thirteenth century. His teachings survive in two Quodlibeta, a challenging and popular form of scholastic debate undertaken by eminent masters at the University of Paris. An edition of Ferrarius's second, previously unexplored Quodlibetum is presented in Appendix I.

Ferrarius, in his Quodlibeta, revealed an acute awareness of the complex financial realities developing during the thirteenth century, and, as discussed in Chapter I, he sought to reconcile conflicting secular and mendicant economic interests through carefully-worded responses to his objectors' questions. Ferrarius and his writings also provide insight into the unprecedented thirteenth-century developments in angelology, and Chapter II offers an explanation for this intellectual phenomenon. Finally, Ferrarius's writings exhibit strong ties to Thomas Aquinas's revolutionary and controversial theology, yet he has never been mentioned among the early Thomistic school. A close comparison between the works of these two Dominicans, presented in Chapter III, proves that Ferrari us was the first and strongest defender of his renowned predecessor and that his efforts helped establish Thomas's doctrine as the official teaching first of the Order of Preachers and later of the universal church.

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