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The critical edition of all medieval Greek-Latin translations of Aristotle is one of the main projects of the research unit Aristoteles Latinus. The project is supervised and supported by the International Union of Academies, and its most important objective is to bring to evidence the various forms in which Aristotle’s texts came to be read in the West. The Latin versions of these texts constituted the main tools for the study of science and philosophy in the Middle Ages. They were considered as being the canonized littera to which all the commentaries on Aristotle’s works referred. The role played by these translations in the development of Western philosophical and scientific terminology can thus hardly be overestimated. The Aristoteles Latinus collection meets the highest standards for critical editions of medieval texts and an international board is responsible for its scientific value.

When the project started, the aim of the Aristoteles Latinus Database was to offer a database of the Medieval Latin translations of Aristotle’s works made on the basis of the Greek original text. Today, the database is part of a comprehensive cluster of databases relating to the study of Latin. This cluster consists of full-text databases (namely, the Library of Latin Texts, the Monumenta Germaniae Historica, the Archive of Celtic-Latin Literature and the Aristoteles Latinus Database) and Latin dictionaries (under the heading of the Database of Latin Dictionaries).

Aims & Scope

The Aristoteles Latinus Database aims at documenting the various tools that were used in the Middle Ages for the study of Aristotle, with a special emphasis on Latin translations. The first release of the database (ALD-1/2003) consisted mainly of the Greco-Latin translations in the printed Aristoteles Latinus series and also in some unpublished editions in preparation. In the second release (ALD-2/2006), this corpus of translations was further expanded with texts that had been edited within other contexts (such as the Editio Leonina of Thomas Aquinas’s works). The third release adds many new texts to this corpus, nearly doubling its volume, and in doing so, widens its scope. Not only does it add several previously unavailable Greco-Latin Aristotle translations, it now also includes other texts that have shaped the study of the Latin Aristotle in the Middle Ages. These incluce the corpus of Latin translations of Greek commentaries and glosses on Aristotle (most of them published in the Corpus Latinum Commentariorum in Aristotelem Graecorum), texts that were closely associated with the Corpus Aristotelicum (such as the Liber sex principiorum, the Paraphrasis Themistiana or the Vita Aristotelis), and some translations from the Arabic (the Analytica Posteriora, tr. Gerardi and Averroes’Poetria, tr. Hermanni).

At present, the Aristoteles Latinus Database contains more than 2.3 million Latin words, drawn from 110 works that are attributed to 45 authors.

The electronic database offers the complete texts but is not identical to the printed publication as it omits the prefaces describing the manuscript tradition and also the apparatus of variant readings. Nor does it include the Greek-Latin comparative apparatus or the bilingual indexes. The critically edited texts themselves, however, have been included with all their peculiarities, such as interlinear notes, and the typographical distinctions that characterise the texts of the revised versions.

The texts included have been prepared and supervised by the Aristoteles Latinus Centre of the University of Leuven, under the supervision of Pieter De Leemans. The database is produced in collaboration with the Centre ‘Traditio Litterarum Occidentalium’ (CTLO), which is a humanities computing laboratory for the study of Latin texts. The CTLO, which looked after the textual and philological aspects of the electronic treatment, has undertaken the finalisation of the material into the required electronic form. The aim is to provide the academic world with a scholarly product of the highest quality.


Recent Updates

The Aristoteles Latinus Database has received a major update: alongside the newly added Physiognomonica as translated by Bartholomew of Messina (ed. L. Devriese, 2019) and Books VI-X of De historia animalium as translated by William of Moerbeke (ed. P. Beullens & F. Bossier, 2021), the ALD also pilots an improved data organization and user interface. Please do not hesitate to send us your feedback.

Search Possibilities

The ALD uses the new search interface developed for the BREPOliS Latin databases.

The Aristoteles Latinus Database is a Latin full-text database which enables the user to profit from an elaborate system of tools that can be used with the help of a multilingual interface (English, French, German and Italian):

– One can use the database in order to read texts as a whole, to search for words and expressions, to access individual texts by means of their references, or to examine the distribution of word-forms across the entire database and to analyse vocabulary within an individual work, by displaying an exhaustive concordance for each form that is part of that work.

– One can execute a search across all the texts in the database or, with the help of filters, define a subset and limit the search to one or more periods within the corpus, to one or more authors, as well as to one or more titles of works.

– Other criteria for formulating queries are the century of composition and, for works of the Patristic Period, the number in the Aristoteles Latinus Clavis based on the classification of Aristotelian works followed by I. Bekker.

– Far from being limited to queries for single words, the user can search for groups of words or for a particular expressions.

– Search possibilities can be extended by the use of Boolean and proximity operators.

– The order of precedence of the search terms within a query can be organised.

– Queries can be simplified by using wildcards.

– By default, the field to which a query is applied is the sentence as delimited in the text edition used (“the string of text going from full stop to full stop”).

– The target of queries can be widened by extending it to groups of three sentences.

– The ALD makes it possible to perform a ‘similarity search’ (a kind of ‘fuzzy search’). This procedure offers the possibility to quickly search for strings of text that are not absolutely identical to those which are entered in the search field. It was developed to assist the user to find the origin of quotations or other text without having to know the exact words and/or their order.

The table of contents section, which gives access to individual texts by means of their references, offers the possibility of using the references of the Greek text according to the Bekker edition (page and column),which are the most commonly used.

– A direct link to the Database of Latin Dictionaries (which integrates different types of Latin dictionaries, whether modern, medieval or early-modern) allows the user to find relevant dictionary entries for Latin word-forms that appear in texts visualized by the ALD, and to read the articles in the selected dictionaries.

partner_icon Partners

The Aristoteles Latinus Database is produced in collaboration with the following partners:

– Union Académique Internationale / International Union of Academies;

Aristoteles Latinus Centre (De Wulf-Mansioncentrum of the Hoger Instituut voor Wijsbegeerte of the University of Leuven (KU Leuven), currently under the direction of Pr. Lisa Devriese;

– Centre ‘Traditio Litterarum Occidentalium’ (CTLO) under the direction of Pr. Paul Tombeur and Pr. Toon Van Hal

The ‘Centre Traditio Litterarum Occidentalium’ (CTLO) continues and develops the earlier activities in the field of Latin studies of Cetedoc, a centre which was founded by the Université catholique de Louvain at Louvain-la-Neuve and has been developed jointly by Brepols Publishers and the university.


The Aristoteles Latinus Database makes a distinction between two periods in the history of Latin:

Aetas patrum, a period that we normally locate between ca. 200 and the death of the Venerable Bede (735). The oldest text in the database, the Paraphrasis Themistiana (a text originally written in Latin), probably dates from the fourth century, whereas the oldest translations (by Boethius) are from the sixth century.

Medii aeui scriptores, from 736 to 1500.

According to the nature of the texts included, the database distinguishes between translations of Aristotle, translations of commentaries on Aristotle, and other texts which don’t belong to either of these categories. The database also works with distinctions made with reference to the linguistic background of the texts: it distinguishes Greco-Latin translations, Semitico-Latin translations and texts originally written in Latin.

Thus, a text can be defined as:

– a Greco-Latin translation of a text by (pseudo-)Aristotle;

– a Semitico-Latin translation of a text by (pseudo-)Aristotle;

– a Greco-Latin translation of a commentary on (pseudo-)Aristotle;

– a Semitico-Latin translation of a commentary on (pseudo-)Aristotle;

– a Greco-Latin translation of a text that is not by Aristotle;

– a text originally written in Latin.

The complete list of works (last updated: December 2016) can be downloaded here (PDF file): ALD_list_of_works

video Video

Webinar in English “Enhancing your lexicographical research with the new DLD and ALD interfaces” (21/04/2023):

flyer Leaflet

English version (PDF)


Aristoteles Latinus Database: new interface available!

related Clusters & Related Databases


The Aristoteles Latinus Database is included in the cluster BREPOLiS Latin Complete, along with the Library of Latin TextsMonumenta Germaniae HistoricaArchive of Celtic-Latin Literature, the Cross Database Search Tool and the Database of Latin Dictionaries.

Linked Databases

‘Live links’ to the Database of Latin Dictionaries

Subscriptions & Contact

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© Functional design by CTLO and Brepols Publishers, Turnhout, 2023
© Database by Union Académique Internationale, Brepols Publishers N.V. and CTLO, 2023
© Lucene – search technology by Apache Foundation (
© Publication rights by Brepols Publishers, Turnhout, 2023

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