In 1308 Duns Scotus was sent by the general of his order to Cologne, with the twofold object of engaging in a controversy with the Beghards and of assisting in the foundation of a university; according to some, his removal was due to jealousy.
Another chief point of difference with Aquinas was in regard to the freedom of the will, which Duns Scotus maintained absolutely.
Still later Duns Scotus and Occam were both Franciscans.
This difficulty was presently raised by Duns Scotus and the realistically-inclined opponents of the Thomist doctrine.
On Duns Scotus generally, see life by Wadding in vol.
It is a curious commentary on the theories of Duns Scotus that one pupil, Francis, should have taken this course, while another pupil, Occam, should have used his arguments in a diametrically opposite direction and ended in extreme Nominalism.
Further, while the genius of Aquinas was constructive, that of Duns Scotus was destructive; Aquinas was a philosopher, Duns a critic. The latter has been said to stand to the former in the relation of Kant to Leibnitz.
Among the disciples of Duns Scotus are mentioned John of Bassolis, Francis of Mayrone, Antonius Andreae (d.
Doctrine that there is a material, as well as a formal, element in all created beings was explicitly adopted from Avicebron by Duns Scotus (as against the view of Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas), and perhaps his exaltation of the will above the intellect is due to the same influence.
One might almost say that Duns Scotus recognizes the principle of a gradual physical evolution, only that he chooses to represent the mechanism by which the process is brought about by means of quaint scholastic fictions.