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A Summa of the Summa: The Essential Philosophical Passages of St. Thomas Aquinas' Summa Theologica [Paperback]

By Thomas Aquinas (Author), Frederic Thomas (Author) & Peter Kreeft (Editor)
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Item description for A Summa of the Summa: The Essential Philosophical Passages of St. Thomas Aquinas' Summa Theologica by Thomas Aquinas, Frederic Thomas & Peter Kreeft...

Combines selected philosophical passages from Thomas' "Summa Theologica" with detailed footnotes and explanations for modern readers.

Publishers Description
Combines selected philosophical passages from Thomas' Summa Theologica with detailed footnotes and explanations for modern readers.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Ignatius Press
Pages   539
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.9" Width: 6" Height: 1.5"
Weight:   1.6 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 1, 1990
Publisher   Ignatius Press
ISBN  089870300X  
ISBN13  9780898703009  
UPC  008987030003  

Availability  16 units.
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More About Thomas Aquinas, Frederic Thomas & Peter Kreeft

Thomas Aquinas Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274) lived at a critical juncture of western culture when the arrival of the Aristotelian corpus in Latin translation reopened the question of the relation between faith and reason, calling into question the modus vivendi that had obtained for centuries. This crisis flared up just as universities were being founded. Thomas, after early studies at Montecassino, moved on to the University of Naples in 1244, where he met members of the new Dominican Order. It was at Naples too that Thomas had his first extended contact with the new learning. When he joined the Dominican Order he went north to study with Albertus Magnus, author of a paraphrase of the Aristotelian corpus. Thomas completed his studies at the University of Paris, which had been formed out of the monastic schools on the Left Bank and the cathedral school at Notre Dame. In two stints as a regent master Thomas defended the mendicant orders and, of greater historical importance, countered both the Averroistic interpretations of Aristotle and the Franciscan tendency to reject Greek philosophy. The result was a new modus vivendi between faith and philosophy which survived until the rise of the new physics. The Catholic Church has over the centuries regularly and consistently reaffirmed the central importance of Thomas's work for understanding its teachings concerning the Christian revelation, and his close textual commentaries on Aristotle represent a cultural resource which is now receiving increased recognition.

He was formally canonized in 1323.

Thomas Aquinas was born in 1225 and died in 1274.

Thomas Aquinas has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Aristotelian Commentary Series
  2. Dumb Ox Books' Aristotelian Commentaries
  3. Fathers of the Church: Mediaeval Continuation
  4. Notre Dame Series in the Great Books
  5. Oxford World's Classics (Paperback)
  6. Penguin Classics
  7. Saints Lives
  8. St. Thomas Aquinas
  9. Summa Contra Gentiles
  10. Summa Theologiae (Cambridge University Press)
  11. Thomas Aquinas in Translation

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Roman Catholicism
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Saints
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible > General
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Catholic

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

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Reviews - What do customers think about A Summa of the Summa?

Excellent for the novice  Mar 29, 2008
This book is an excellent introduction to St. Thomas Aquinas. There are tons of footnotes that really bring home the main points in each article. This is a "must have" book for the novice philosopher.
Awesome!  Feb 17, 2007
This book is exactly what I was looking for. I'm a college freshman and one of my classes is going through St. Thomas' Summa and this book is great at explaining important details.
Not what I expected...  Jan 4, 2007
Sitting in a coffee shop reading a commentary on the Summa, I was approached by a St. Thomas University professor whose specialty was St. Thomas; she asked me why of all things was I reading a book on St. Thomas. I told I had enjoyed St. Augustine's City of God and how a friend with a middle name of Thomas, who's father's middle name was Thomas, and who's grandfather's middle name was Thomas told me that I should read St. Thomas if I liked Augustine so much. The professor agreed and said that St. Thomas quoted Augustine much. So, armed with information that A Summa of the Summa was the definitive collection of St Thomas' work, I put down the commentary and immediately ordered a copy from this site. I was surprised though to find little similarity between the authors. Augustine is a theologian, while Thomas is a philosopher/logician. Though for well-rounded thinkers, the paths of these sets of disciplines should regularly cross, they are as yet distinctly different fields of study. As an engineer with a reasonably firm grasp of logic, my preference is to pursue more enjoyable reading, which I found to be Augustine's City of God and to a lesser degree his Confessions. The Summa of the Summa is page after page of unadulterated, dry logic. Ouch!
No Better Place to Start  Jul 20, 2004
On the one hand, the text of the Summa can be hard for beginners, even smart ones. On the other hand, textbooks where people tell you what other people thought suck. So Kreeft gives you the main dish, the text of the Summa itself (trimmed of some extraneous material not relevant to beginners (stop complaining specialists and fanatics!)), but with his lucid notes at the bottom of the page along with helpful illustrations. The book also sports a handy glossary. So go ahead, don't be afraid, read Aquinas, but don't be afraid to buy this book and have Kreeft along as a guide.
Embracing the title of "Beginner"  Mar 19, 2004
Most books on Thomas Acquinas can be summarized: "He was a great man and I understand him and you never will." Kreeft diverges from academic interpretation, often designed to show off the brilliancy of the academic interpreter, by providing the reader with Acquinas' own words. He carefully provides footnotes designed to clarify language (he makes use of a literal interpretation into English) and issues. It is an effective approach, but not just for "Beginners." Many people familiar with Thomist thought will find clarification in Kreeft's brief notes and even discover, as I did, understandings they thought they had were, to one degree or another, inaccurate. As I went through this book I found that the title of "Beginner" is in many ways a good thing, especially when climbing the heights of Thomas Acquinas and Krefft is an exceptionally good guide for that climb.
Portions of the Summa have been omitted, including Objections unique to Acquinas' time and irrelevant to the modern reader and Part III of the Summa. Frankly, while recognizing the religious focus of Part III might not be immediately useful to all readers, I would have liked to seen at least some of it with Kreeft's footnotes, perhaps as a second volume.

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