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The Details of Aquinas' Life

The following is based on an actual e-mail exchange I recently had with a visitor to the Thomistic Philosophy Page:

Two part question: (A) - Did Aquinas ever write a work called The Philosophy of Mathematical Science and (B) did Aquinas ever write any of his works in Greek and not Latin?

(A) Not that I have ever heard of. Aquinas didn't really know about "Mathematical Science." He does refer to sciences like astronomy as "mixed," i.e. as having a mathematical component in addition to their own proper subject matter, but mathematics is one sort of science different from other sorts

(B) No, Aquinas did not know Greek, at least not well enough to write in it. He relied on translations, mostly by his friend William of Moerbeke.

Have you ever seen Aquinas' handwriting and was it meticulous to the point of being almost a work of art in the way that some Bible manuscripts were? In other words, did he have very neat handwriting?

I have seen reproductions of Aquinas' handwriting, and it is anything but meticulous and artisitc. Aquinas used a lot of short-hand abreviations that were pretty idiosyncratic, but it is also pretty hard to distinguish and identify the actual characters of his script. There are only a handful of people in the world that can actually read his autographs.

I'm sorry if I am deflating the legend of Aquinas for you, but that's the way it is.

No, you're not deflating the legend of Aquinas for me. I will tell you why I have asked these questions, just so you will know.

A friend of mine dragged me to see a "channeler" a couple years ago. Among the "beings" the channeler described to me was Thomas Aquinas who, she said, was holding a book (which I have come to see is the way he is almost always pictured) and that the book was written in Greek and that the translation of the title was The Philosophy of Mathematical Science. She also said that this ancient book was written in a very precise hand so that the writing itself was like a work of art. The only other detail she mentioned is that there was a map on one page of this book.

I wanted to check what she had said about Aquinas. As we have seen, she was apparently wrong on all counts - he didn't write a book by that title, he didn't write in Greek, and he didn't even have neat handwriting. I suppose he could have been holding a Greek translation of his own lost work that was copied by someone else, but that seems to be stretching it a bit, don't you think? Ah well...

Indeed, the supposition that a channeler even could be in contact with St. Thomas seems to indicate that she is not really in touch with the mind of the Angelic Doctor.
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