1/30/13

'Nothing short of genius'

"I CONSIDER it as being without possible comparison the best book ever written on St. Thomas. Nothing short of genius can account for such an achievement. Everybody will no doubt admit that it is a "clever" book, but the few readers who have spent twenty or thirty years in studying St. Thomas Aquinas, and who, perhaps, have themselves published two or three volumes on the subject, cannot fail to perceive that the so-called "wit" of Chesterton has put their scholarship to shame. He has guessed all that which they had tried to demonstrate, and he has said all that which they were more or less clumsily attempting to express in academic formulas. Chesterton was one of the deepest thinkers who ever existed; he was deep because he was right; and he could not help being right; but he could not either help being modest and charitable, so he left it to those who could understand him to know that he was right, and deep; to the others, he apologized for being right, and he made up for being deep by being witty. That is all they can see of him."

~Etienne Gilson (leading 20th cent. Thomist), quoted in Chesterton by Cyril Clemens.

St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Francis of Assisi:
With Introductions by Ralph McInerny and Joseph Pearce
At Amazon,
http://amzn.to/J2y8lE