St. Thomas Aquinas
New York: Sheed & Ward, 1954. Early edition. Octavo, original brown cloth, original dust jacket. Book fine, several tiny closed tears along edges of bright, clean dust jacket. A nearly-fine copy. Item #1149
"YOU CALL HIM A DUMB OX; I TELL YOU THAT THE DUMB OX WILL BELLOW SO LOUD THAT HIS BELLOWING WILL FILL THE WORLD"
Splendid mid-century printing of G.K. Chesterton's acclaimed biography of St. Thomas—"I consider it without possible comparison the best book ever written on St. Thomas" (Etienne Gilson). First published in 1933, St. Thomas Aquinas was Chesterton's follow-up to his Life of St. Francis of Assisi (1926). Chesterton set the tone for this biography of Thomas by unearthing the essential unity between two medieval saints who seem so different: "the great fact of medieval history is that these two great men were doing the same great work; one in the study and the other in the street. They were not bringing something new into Christianity; in the sense of something heathen or heretical into Christianity; on the contrary, they were bringing Christianity into Christendom." Contents: Introductory Note, I. On Two Friars, II. The Runaway Abbot, III. The Aristotelian Revolution, IV. A Meditation on the Manichees, V. The Real Life of St. Thomas, VI. The Approach to Thomism, VII. The Permanent Philosophy, VIII. The Sequel to St. Thomas. First published in 1933 in England (by Hodder and Stoughton) and in the United States (by Sheed and Ward), St. Thomas Aquinas is "written in Chesterton's inimitable style, it is an appealing introduction to the greatness and power of the Scholastic synthesis and its significance for mankind" (George McLean). The Sheed & Ward edition featured a typographical dust jacket with the famous prophesy by Thomas's Dominican teacher, Albert the Great: "You call him a Dumb Ox; I tell you that the Dumb Ox will bellow so loud that his bellowing will fill the world." With Chesterton's Dedication to Dorothy Collins, his longtime secretary and future literary executrix. Sullivan, G.K. Chesterton: A Bibliography, 94. McLean, Bibliography of Philosophy in Catholic Thought, 294.