Philosophy Institutions (Second Volume)


This manuscript contains the Arabic translation of the second volume of Institutiones philosophiae (Philosophy institutions), a treatise on ethics and natural theology by Joseph Luis Dmovski (also known as Josephus Aloysius Dmowski and Giuseppe Luigi Dmowski, 1799–1879). The author was a Polish Jesuit and professor of logic and theology at the Jesuit College (also called Roman College and Gregorian University) in Rome. The original work was first published in Latin around 1840. It appears to have been part of Dmowski’s response to a dispute on the definition of moral law between him and Roman Catholic theologian Antonio Rosmini-Serbati (1797–1855). The book leads with an introduction on the history of ethics, noting contributions to the field by both ancient Greek philosophers and Christian theologians. The rest of the content is largely organized into qadaya (singular qadiyah, or issue), with each issue tackling broader questions related to moral philosophy, such as the purpose of a good and righteous life, and natural moral law. The overall focus of the work is a critical examination of Greek morality. Rather than rejecting it outright, the author’s goal is to embrace elements in the philosophy that are found to be “true” and to “conform to our faith.” The Arabic translation presented here was done in 1857 by Yusuf ibn Ilyas al-Dibs (1833–1907), a Maronite clergyman, historian, and the archbishop of Beirut at that time. Al-Dibs was known for his interest in philosophy. As archbishop, in 1875 he opened the Maronite madrasat al-hikma (School of Philosophy) in Beirut and was closely involved in maintaining the Maronite union with the Holy See. The Maronite Church traces its origin to Saint Maron, a late-fourth century Syrian hermit.

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Title in Original Language

(الرسومُ الفلسَفيَةُ (اَلمُجلَّد الثَانى

Type of Item

Physical Description

144 folios ; 22.3 x 17 centimeters sheets bound in 23.5 x 18.2 centimeters



  1. Eugenio Garin, History of Italian philosophy (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2008).

Last updated: January 10, 2018