Medieval philosophy is the philosophy in the era now known as medieval or the Middle Ages, the period roughly extending from the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century C.E. to the Renaissance in the 16th century. Medieval philosophy, understood as a project of independent philosophical inquiry, began in Baghdad, in the middle of the 8th century, and in France, in the itinerant court of Charlemagne, in the last quarter of the 8th century. It is defined partly by the process of rediscovering the ancient culture developed in Greece and Rome in the classical period, and partly by the need to address theological problems and to integrate sacred doctrine with secular learning.
The history of medieval philosophy is traditionally divided into two main periods: the period in the Latin West following the Early Middle Ages until the 12th century, when the works of Aristotle and Plato were preserved and cultivated and the 'golden age' of the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries in the Latin West, which witnessed the culmination of the recovery of ancient philosophy, along with a reception of its Arabic commentators, and significant developments in the field of Philosophy of religion, Logic and Metaphysics.
The medieval era was disparagingly treated by the Renaissance.humanists, who saw it as a barbaric 'middle' period between the classical age of Greek and Roman culture, and the 'rebirth' or renaissance of classical culture. Modern historians consider the medieval era to be one of philosophical development, heavily influenced by Christian theology. One of the most notable thinkers of the era, Thomas Aquinas, never considered himself a philosopher, and criticized philosophers for always "falling short of the true and proper wisdom to be found in Christian revelation".
The problems discussed throughout this period are the relation of faith to reason, the existence and simplicity of God, the purpose of theology and metaphysics, and the problems of knowledge, of universals, and of individuation