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cording to the strict import of this word, false things cannot be known (intelligi); yet these things can assuredly be conceived of in the same manner as the fool has conceived that God is not. I know assuredly that I exist; yet I know, nevertheless, that I am able not to exist; and I know too beyond all doubt that this Supreme Being, which is God, both exists and is unable not to exist; yet does this prevent me from conceiving that he does not exist? I know not indeed that I am able to conceive that I do not exist, so long as I certainly know that I do exist; but if I am able, why may I not conceive the same of anything else of whose existence I am equally assured? If I am not able, then God is not the only Being of whom it may be said that I cannot conceive that he is not.

The other things described in this little book with so much truth, clearness and splendor, are so useful, and so fragrant with the odor of pious and holy feeling, that they ought not to be undervalued on account of those things, which in the beginning are advanced with good intention indeed, but with less strength of argument. While the latter require to be confirmed by a more rigorous logic, the whole should be received with great respect and veneration.

II. THE APOLOGY OF ANSELM IN REPLY TO GAUNILON RESPONDING IN BEHALF OF THE FOOL.

Preface.

Since it is not the fool, against whom I reasoned in the Proslogion, who here attacks my argument, but a Catholic, and no fool either, speaking in behalf of the fool, it is sufficient for me to reply to the Catholic.

CHAPTER I. The reasoning of the objection refuted in general, and that than which a greater cannot be conceived shown to exist in reality.

You maintain

- whosoever you are who say that the fool may re

ply in these terms - that there exists not in the intelligence anything than which a greater cannot be conceived, except as to the mere sound of the words, and except in such a manner that it cannot even in thought be represented under the form of any existing reality; and that it no more follows that this greatest conceivable being, to which I allude, has any real existence, from the mere fact that it is in the intelligence, than it follows that the lost island exists in reality from the fact that he who hears it described in words has no doubt that it

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is in his intelligence. But I reply, that if this greatest conceivable being is neither understood nor conceived; if it exists neither in the intelligence nor in the thought, then surely God is not the greatest conceivable Being, or he is neither understood nor conceived, and exists neither in the intelligence nor the thought. But for the falseness of this conclusion I have an unanswerable argument in your own faith and conscience. Therefore we both truly understand and conceive we have in the intelligence and the thought, a being than which a greater cannot be conceived. Hence the premises from which you endeavor to prove the contrary are not true, or the conclusions which you think you logically draw from them are false. You suppose that from the mere fact that the greatest conceivable being is understood, it does not follow that it is in the intelligence, and if it is in the intelligence it does not follow that it exists in reality. Certainly, I reply, if it can even be conceived to be, it of necessity is. For the greatest conceivable being can only be conceived to exist without a beginning; but whatever can be conceived to exist, and yet does not exist, can be conceived to exist only through a beginning. Therefore the greatest conceivable being cannot be conceived to be, and yet not be. Therefore if it can be conceived to be, it is of necessity. Again, if it is even possible to form a conception of this being, it necessarily exists. For no one who doubts or denies that there is anything than which a greater cannot be conceived, will doubt or deny that if it did exist it would be unable either in fact or in our conception not to exist, for otherwise it would not be that, than which a greater cannot be conceived; but whatever can be conceived and yet is not, if it should hereafter exist would be able both in fact and in our intelligence not to exist. Wherefore if it is even possible to conceive of the being in question, it is impossible for it not to exist. But let us suppose that this being does not exist, even if it can be conceived; then, whatsoever can be conceived and yet is not, should it hereafter exist, would not be the greatest being conceivable. If therefore this greatest conceivable should hereafter exist, it would not be the greatest conceivable; which is supremely absurd. It is false, therefore, that this greatest conceivable being does not exist, if it is possible even to form a conception of it; much more so if it is possible for it to be understood, and to exist in the intelligence. I will farther add that without

1 Gaunilon's view is that from the mere fact that this being is understood, in the sense of understanding the words by which it is announced, it does not follow that it is in the intelligence, in the sense of being fully and perfectly comprehended.

doubt what does not exist in some place or at some time, even if it exist in some other place or at some other time, may yet be conceived to exist in no place or at no time, in the same way that it does not exist at any other particular place or time. For that which yesterday was not, and to-day is, may be conceived never to have been, just as it is known not to have been yesterday; and what here is not but elsewhere is, may be conceived to be in no place, just as it is not here. In like manner that of which each part does not exist at the same time and in the same place with all its other parts, may, with all its parts and therefore as a whole, be conceived to exist never and nowhere. For, although time is said to be always and the universe everywhere; yet the whole of time does not exist at each moment, nor does the universe as a whole exist in every place; and as each part of time does not exist at the same moment with all its other parts, so all the parts of time may be conceived as never existing; and as each part of the universe does not exist in the same place with all its other parts, so all parts of the universe may be conceived as existing nowhere; also, whatever is composed of parts, may in thought be decomposed and conceived as not existing. Wherefore, everything which does not exist as a whole at every particular time or place, even if it exist, may be conceived not to exist; but the greatest conceivable being, if it exist, cannot be conceived not to exist; otherwise, if it exist it is not the greatest being conceivable; which is a contradiction. There is, therefore, no time or place when, or in which, this being does not exist as a whole; but as a whole it exists everywhere and always. Do you question in any degree whether it is possible for a being of which such things are predicated to be conceived or understood; to exist in the thought or in the intelligence? For if this being cannot be conceived, these things cannot be predicated of it. But if you say it is not understood and it does not exist in the intelligence, because it is not fully and perfectly understood, you may as well say that he who is unable to look upon the bright effulgence of the sun does not see the light of day, which is nothing but the light of the sun. Unquestionably this greatest conceivable being is, so far at least, understood and in the intelligence, that these things can be predicated of it.

CHAPTER II. The preceding reasoning farther urged, and this greatest conceivable being shown to be an object of thought and therefore to exist.

Accordingly I have said in the argument which you reprehend, that when the fool hears this greatest conceivable being mentioned,

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he understands what he hears. Clearly, he who does not understand this when he is addressed in a language with which he is acquainted, must either be entirely destitute of intelligence, or his intellect must indeed be exceedingly obtuse. I then said that if this is understood, then it is in his intelligence. Can that be denied to be in any intelligence, which is proved to have a real and necessary existence? But you will say if it is in the intelligence, it is not in consequence of its being understood. But, mark, it follows that it is in the intelligence precisely, because it is understood. For that which is conceived, is conceived by the thought; and whatever is conceived by the thought, is in the thought just as it is conceived; so, what is understood is understood by the intelligence; and what is understood by the intelligence is in the intelligence just as it is understood? What is more plain? Subsequently, I said that if it is in the intelligence alone, it can be conceived to exist in reality; which is greater. If, therefore, it exists in the intellect alone, then forsooth, this very being, the greatest conceivable is one, than which a greater can be conceived. What, I ask, can be more conclusive? For, if it is in the intellect alone, can it not be conceived to exist in reality also? and if it can, does not he who conceives this, conceive something greater than it, if it is in the intellect alone? What is more evident than that, if this greatest conceivable being exists in the intellect alone, this same being is such that a greater can be conceived. But, assuredly, that, than which a greater can be conceived, exists in no intellect, and is never apprehended as something than which a greater cannot be conceived. Does it not follow, therefore, that if that, than which a greater cannot be conceived, exists in any intellect, it does not exist in the intellect alone? For, if it exists in the intellect alone, then something greater can be conceived, which is a contradiction.

CHAPTER III. The example of the objector, that it must follow that the fictitious island exists in reality, because it is conceived.

But, you say, it is as if some one speaking of an island in the ocean excelling in fertility all other lands, which, owing to the difficulty, nay, the impossibility, of finding what does not exist, is called the lost island, should declare that it cannot therefore be doubted that this island has a real existence, because any one easily understands the words by which it is described. I reply confidently, that if any one will find for me any object whatever, existing either in reality or in the conception alone, to which the reasoning of my argument is applicable, besides that being, than which a greater cannot be con

ceived, I will pledge myself that I will find for him this lost island, and will secure it to him in such a way that it will never be lost again. But it has already been made expressly to appear, that this greatest conceivable being cannot be conceived not to exist, because the grounds of its existence are so certain and necessary; for otherwise it could not exist at all. Finally, if any one affirms that he conceives this not to exist, I reply, that when he conceives this, he either conceives something than which a greater cannot be conceived, or he does not. If he does not, then obviously he does not conceive that not to exist which he has not conceived at all. But if he does, he unquestionably conceives something which cannot be conceived not to exist. For, if it could be conceived not to exist, it would be conceived to have a beginning and an end; but this can have neither. Whoever, therefore, conceives this, conceives something which cannot be conceived not to exist; but he who conceives this, does not conceive that this same thing does not exist; otherwise he conceives what cannot be conceived. This greatest conceivable being, therefore, cannot be conceived not to exist.

CHAPTER IV. The difference between being able to be conceived not to exist, and being able to be known not to exist.

But as you intimate, that when it is affirmed that this supreme thing cannot be conceived (cogitari) not to exist, it would be more proper to say, that it cannot be known (intelligi) not to exist, I still maintain that conceived was the best word to use. For, had I said that this thing cannot be known not to exist, you who say that ac cording to the proper signification of this word, false things cannot be known, would, perhaps, object that nothing which is, can be known not to be; for it is false to say that that is not, which is; wherefore it is not peculiar to God, that He cannot be known not to exist. But if any one of these things which certainly are, can be known not to exist, in like manner other certain things can be known not to exist. But this objection evidently will not hold in relation to the word conceived, when properly considered. For although none of the things which are, can be known not to exist; yet they can all be conceived not to exist, except that which is supreme. For all those things, and those alone can be conceived not to be, which have a beginning and an end, and are composed of parts; and, as I have said, whatever does not exist as a whole at any time, or in any place; but that alone cannot be conceived not to exist, which has neither parts nor begin. ning nor end, and which no conception can find except existing as a

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