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Vico’s Ring


In view of all that has been said above on behalf of the thesis of Vico’s

trichotomous epistemological framework, the ultimate grounds of his reflec-

tions in “philosophy” are not separate or independent but rather emerge from

the complex functorial interaction of all three spheres. From this vantage

point, there is no need, or, indeed, the possibility, of another sphere of puta-

tively more fundamental or superior philosophical standing. We can therefore

concur with P. Girard: «[…] la modernità vichiana si definisce come la volon-

tà, non di sfumare la ragione, ma di offrirne una definizione allargata e più

ampia ([…] Vico’s modernity is defined by its determination, not to water

down reason, but to offer up an enlarged and more complete definition)» (Id.,

Modernità e “ragione tutto spegata” in Vico

, in

Razionalità e modernità in Vico

, cit., pp.

245-261, p. 261).


In Bedani’s words: « […] it is not possible for the “verum factum” and

the “vero”/“certo” perspectives to co-exist as epistemological foundations of

the same science.

They pull in opposing theoretical and methodological directions

. […]

The coexistence within the same work of a normative intention with the elab-

oration of an empirical method is necessarily an uneasy one» (Id.,

Vico Revisit-


, cit., pp. 198, 211; italics original).


Maybe more correctly, the main topic of

Liber metaphysicus

, since

De an-

tiquissima Italorum sapientia


On the Most Ancient Wisdom of the Italians

) was

planned to consist of three books,

Liber metaphysicus

being the first book only,

the other two books never having materialized as originally proposed. There-

fore, we will continue to refer to it as

De antiquissima,

as being synonymous


Liber metaphysicus.


D. R. Lachterman,

Mathematics and Nominalism in Vico’s Liber Metaphysi-


, in

Sachkommentar zu Giambattista Vicos “Liber metaphysicus

”, ed. by S. Otto

and H. Viechtbauser, Munich, Wilhelm Fink Verlag, 1985, pp. 47-85, p. 63.


G. Cerchiai,

Il “padre divino di ogni ritrovato”. Aspetti dell’idea vichiani di inge-



Razionalità e modernità in Vico,

cit., pp. 33-49, pp. 46-47; M. Lollini,


ra, ragione e modernità nella

Scienza nuova

di Vico



, pp. 219-243, pp. 226-227;

see also Id.,

On Becoming Human: The Verum Factum

Principle and Giambattista

Vico’s Humanism

, in «MLN» (formerly «Modern Language Notes»), 127, 2012,

1, pp. S21-S31, p. S26.



Natura, ragione e modernità nella

Scienza nuova

di Vico

, cit., p. 226.


H. Steinke,

Vico’s Three Realms

, cit.


In fact, Fig. 2 above is adapted from Fig. 2,


, p. 75.


Such caution is especially appropriate when the theory and practice of

mathematics, both ancient and modern, is naively understood, or rather, mis-