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Ptolemy of Lucca's sympathetic description of republican self-rule together with his unfavourable view of monarchy in the De regimine principum has led many scholars to categorize him as a pioneer of civic republicanism. The present study refutes this common opinion. It illuminates Ptolemy's theory of government through its relationship to the papalism he repeatedly expressed in several works. This study argues that Ptolemy's theory of government in the De regimine principum was inspired by his papalist convictions, and demonstrates how that theory clearly reflected Ptolemy's papalist point of view, especially in the context of the feud between Pope Boniface VIII and the kings of Western Europe, in particular, Philip the Fair of France.

Keywords: Aristotelianism; Aristotle's politics; Boniface VIII; Guelfism; Philip the Fair; Ptolemy of Lucca; Thomas Aquinas; de regimine principum; determinatio compendiosa; disputatio inter clericum et militem; hierarchy; medieval French royalism; medieval Italy; papalism; political rule; regal rule; republicanism; resistance; self-limiting kingship; tyranny

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Institute for Social Sciences, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany, Email:

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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