Three Books on the Soul


Muhammad ibn Ahmed ibn Rushd (also known by the Latinized version of his name, Averroes, 1126–98) was a Muslim jurist, physician, and philosopher from Cordoba, Spain, best known in the West for reintroducing Aristotle to Europe and in the East for his medical works. He studied theology, law, and medicine, and wrote important works in all of these fields. He served as the religious judge of Seville in 1169–72 and as the chief judge of Cordoba in 1172–82. In 1169, Ibn Rushd began writing a series of commentaries on Aristotle, whose works he probably read in Arabic and Syriac translations from the original Greek. Over a period of nearly three decades, he produced commentaries on nearly all of Aristotle’s writings. His method was to produce short, medium, and long commentaries on the same work, aimed at readers with different levels of understanding. Largely forgotten in the Latin West since the sixth century, Aristotle underwent a revival in the 12th and 13th centuries, when his works were translated into Latin and studied by Christian and Jewish philosophers and theologians such as Thomas Aquinas (1225–74) and Maimonides (1135–1204). From then until the 17th century, European scholars read Aristotle in editions that included commentaries by Ibn Rushd and a school of thought known as Averroism flourished in leading universities. Presented here is a 1521 edition of Ibn Rushd’s commentary on De Anima (On the soul) published in Pavia, Italy. Also included is Theiser (Facilitation of treatment) by Seville physician Abu Marwan Abd al-Malik Ibn Zuhr (also called Avenzoar, 1090–1162) and a commentary on Averroes (Ibn Rushd) by Marco Antonio Zimara (1460–1523), an Italian Aristotelian who edited the works of Aristotle, Averroes, and other philosophers.

Date Created

Publication Information

Jacob Paucidrapii d Burgofranco, Pavia, Italy


Title in Original Language

Libri tres de anima

Type of Item

Physical Description

80 pages ; 29 centimeters


  • The De anima is followed by commentary on Aristotle’s Parva naturalia.

Last updated: April 15, 2016