Welcome to POTESTAS ESSENDI. If you want to know more about philosophical intricacies concerning nature and its fading hylomorphic roots as they were envisioned by medieval thinkers, I guess this is the right place. You can find here materials of different nature and scope, following the development of my research interests over time. Much of it is related to the tension between ontology and natural philosophy in the Middle Ages and, specifically, the concepts of matter, prime matter, and materiality.
However, POTESTAS ESSENDI offers more than just specialised stuff for people with strange interests. One of the main questions I have been asking myself during the past few years is how medieval philosophy can be “communicated” in the sense of “shared” and made “common” as per the original sense of the Latin verb“communicare”. For this reason, POTESTAS ESSENDI also hosts some projects directed to a wider audience of people who might be interested in knowing more about medieval stuff.
Nicola Polloni | 濮若一
I’m Nicola Polloni, the editor of POTESTAS ESSENDI. Hence, you will find a lot of information about me in this website. I work on medieval philosophy, more specifically on the ontological constitution (why a thing is what it is) of the natural world (from squirrels to rocks, and their constituents). Even more specifically, I work on hylomorphism, a theory claiming that all bodies are made of matter and form and which was the main framework of premodern metaphysics, natural philosophy, and science.
I come from Siena, in Tuscany. But I had to travel a lot, studying and working in Italy, Spain, the US, the UK, Germany, and now Belgium, where I am currently working at KU Leuven. Here is a short outline of what POTESTAS ESSENDI has to offer to any fellow web-wanderer with interests in philosophy and its long history:
PHILOSOPHY, NOW AND THEN
Much space is dedicated to the discussion of medieval metaphysical and natural problems and the philosophical relevance they still have – find out more!
WITNESSING THE MIDDLE AGES
Historical reconstructions of debates, actors, texts, and contexts are disseminated throughout the website – take a look!
MY PAST AND PRESENT
My detailed and updated CV gives you a reliable photograph of what I do and did, and what I want to achieve – inspect it!
MY RESEARCH AT A GLANCE
Sections dedicated to my present and past research projects allow you to navigate theories, outputs, and aims of my philosophical wandering – delve into it!
MY PUBLICATIONS, ALL OF THEM
In a dedicated section of the website, you will find a complete list of my publications (and you can download them, too) – browse through them!
THE ELUSIVE SUBSTRATE
Take a look at the fantastic journey of “The Elusive Substrate” – two years of discussions on matter from Rome to China – join the exploration!
Subscribe to the YouTube channel, where you can find dozens of videos on medieval philosophy (and more!) – dive into it!
NEWS AND INFO
The blog section provides updates on many activities related to my research and useful info about what is going on more in general – see what’s going on!
The website has so much more to offer! Feel free to browse it widely and explore its contents.