Who said: "Beware the man of one book"

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

Beware the man of one book (homo unius libri)

This phrase is generally attributed to Thomas Aquinas

Thomas of Aquino is believed to have been born in 1225. His family intended that he would become a Benedictine monk but at the age of nineteen, influenced by one of his teachers at the university, he decided to join the recently established Dominican order. His family were so displeased by his decision that they had him kidnapped and held him captive in the family castle for two years in hopes of convincing him to change his mind. Eventually realizing that they wouldn't succeed, his mother arranged for Thomas to escape at night on the basis that this would be less embarrassing to the family than admitting they'd allowed him to join.

In university he had been heavily influenced by the writings of the Greek philosopher Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC), and also by the 12th century philosophers, Averroes (a Muslim polymath) and Maimonides (a Jewish Rabbi). During his 49 years he became an extremely influencial philosopher and theologian and is considered the leading classical proponent of natural theology (theology based on reason and ordinary experience as opposed to revealed theology which is based on scripture and religious experience).

His best known works are the Summa Theologica (Compendium of Theology) which, despite being unfinished at his death, is considered one of the most influential works of Western literature; and the Summa contra Gentiles

More Quotes

This quote & biography originally ran in an issue of BookBrowse's membership magazine. Full Membership Features & Benefits.

One-Month Free Membership

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Here I Am
    Here I Am
    by Jonathan Safran Foer
    With almost all the accoutrements of upper middle-class suburban life, Julia and Jacob Bloch fit the...
  • Book Jacket: Harmony
    Harmony
    by Carolyn Parkhurst
    In previous novels such as The Dogs of Babel and Lost and Found, Carolyn Parkhurst has shown herself...
  • Book Jacket: Commonwealth
    Commonwealth
    by Ann Patchett
    Opening Ann Patchett's novel Commonwealth about two semi-functional mid-late 20th Century ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Darling Days
    by iO Tillett Wright

    A devastatingly powerful memoir of one young woman's extraordinary coming of age.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Tea Planter's Wife
    by Dinah Jefferies

    An utterly engrossing, compulsive page-turner set in 1920s Ceylon.

    Read Member Reviews

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
Sweet Caress
by William Boyd

William Boyd's Sweet Caress captures an entire lifetime unforgettably within its pages. It captivates.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Blood at the Root

Blood at the Root

"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
- PW Starred Review

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

D C Y C Before T A H

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!



Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.