323. His Influence in Philosophy. -- Henry of Ghent is the most remarkable among the eclectic philosophers who come between St. Thomas and Duns Scotus. We may describe him like Godfrey of Fontaines, and for the same reason, as a complex, many-sided personality. In philosophy, however, he is more original than the latter. His significance in the history of scholasticism is due to a series of original theses which he defended with marked ability, without, however, succeeding in establishing them in the schools. On many points he was a precursor of Duns Scotus. He went back repeatedly on certain favourite questions drawn mainly from metaphysics and psychology. There is no ground for the not uncommon description of him as a Platonist. He did indeed take up certain Augustinian theories that had been current in the earlier scholasticism, but he knew how to modify them so as to adapt them to the remainder of his scholasticism, which is manifestly peripatetic.
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