Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning

2012 Edition
| Editors: Norbert M. Seel

Aquinas, Thomas (1225–1274)

  • Damian GraceEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1428-6_1014


Life Dates

Thomas Aquinas was born at Roccasecca in the Kingdom of Naples, in 1225 or 1226 to Theodora, Countess of Teano and Landulph, Count of Aquino. His family was connected to the Emperors Henry VI and Frederick II, and to the Kings of Argon, Castile, and France. Disappointing his aristocratic family’s expectations, he chose to become a Dominican friar, devoted to academic life, principally at the University of Paris, as a theologian and philosopher (Finnis 1998, p. 1, 15). He died at Fossanova Cisterican monastery on 7 March, 1274 and was canonized on 18 July, 1323. Aquinas is generally regarded as the greatest of medieval philosophers and theologians.

Theoretical Background

While primarily a natural theologian, seeking to illuminate God and Creation through natural reason rather than scriptural exegesis, Aquinas was a considerable philosopher. His use of the newly available works of Aristotle became the main route by which Aristotelian...

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  1. Aquinas, T. (1256-9). Quaestiones Disputatae de Veritate. Accessible online at http://dhspriory.org/thomas/QDdeVer.htm
  2. Aquinas, T. (1265-8). Summa Theologiae. Accessible online at http://www.newadvent.org/summa/
  3. Aristotle. (350 BC). De Anima. Accessible online at http://etext.virginia.edu/toc/modeng/public/AriSoul.html
  4. Donohue, J. W. (1968). St. Thomas Aquinas and Education. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
  5. Finnis, J. (1998). Aquinas. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Government and International RelationsThe University of SydneySydneyAustralia