Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 22.djvu/476

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fruit in no measured amount. And Böethius is the name associated with the scheme of higher education that preceded the university teaching, called the quadrivium, or quadruple group of subjects, namely, arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy. This, together with the trivium, or preparatory group of three subjects—grammar, rhetoric, and logic—constituted what was known as the seven liberal arts but, in the darkest ages, the quadrivium was almost lost sight of, and few went beyond the trivium.

In the seventh century, the era of deepest intellectual gloom, philosophy was at an entire stand-still. Light arises with the eighth, when we are introduced to the cathedral and cloister schools of Charlemagne; and the ninth saw these schools fully established, and an educational reform completed that was to be productive of lasting good results. But the range of instruction was still narrow, scarcely proceeding beyond the Old Logic, and the teachers were, as formerly, the monks. The eleventh century is really the period of dawn. The East was now opened up through the Crusades, and there was frequent intercourse with the learned Saracens of Spain; and thus there were brought into the West the whole of Aristotle's works, with Arabic commentaries, chiefly in Latin translations. The effervescence was prodigious and alarming. The schools were re-enforced by a higher class of teachers, lay as well as clerical; a marked advance was made in Logic and Dialectic; and the great controversy of realism versus nominalism, which had found its birth in the previous century, raged with extraordinary vigor. We are now on the eve of the founding of the universities; Bologna, indeed, being already in existence.

The university proper, however, can hardly be dated earlier than the twelfth century; and the important particulars in its first constitution are these:

First, the separation of philosophy from theology. To expound this, would be to give a chapter of mediæval history. Suffice it to say that Aristotle and the awakening intellect of the eleventh century were the main causes of it. Two classes of minds at this time divided the Church—the pious, devout believers (such as St. Bernard), who needed no reasons for their faith, and the polemic speculative divines (such as Abélard), who wished to make theology rational. It was. an age, too, of stirring political events; the crusading spirit was abroad, and found a certain gratification even in the war of words. The nature of universals was eagerly debated; but, when this controversy came into collision with such leading theological doctrines as the Trinity and predestination, it was no longer possible for philosophy and theology to remain conjoined.

A separation was effected, and determined the leading feature of the university system. The foundation was philosophy, and the fundamental faculty the Faculty of Arts. Bologna, indeed, was eminent for law or jurisprudence, and this celebrity it retained for ages; but