In classical Latin the word quadrivium meant a place where four roads met, and trivium, a place where three roads met. The scholastics of the Middle Ages, looking to the metaphorical meaning of the phrase the Paths of Learning, divided what were called the Seven Liberal Arts and Sciences, but which compromised the whole cycle of instruction in those days, into two classes, calling grammar, rhetoric, and logic the trivium, and arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy the quadrivium. These two roads to the Temple of Wisdom, including seven distinct sciences, were, in the Middle Ages, supposed to include universal knowledge.

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