The Influence of Aquinas

Christopher Upham

in The Oxford Handbook of Aquinas

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780195326093
Published online May 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

The Influence of Aquinas

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  • History of Western Philosophy



The article aims to understand the influence of Aquinas's doctrines. The most salient effects of Aquinas's doctrines are to be found in the medieval university setting. Aquinas earned a significant authority among some Orthodox theologians, an authority that is evident not long after his passing in 1274. By the fifteenth century, Aquinas was familiar enough in Eastern Christianity that exceptional Byzantine theologians, such as George Courtesis, would study Aquinas closely and manifest open respect for his thinking. Certain Jewish rabbis such as Hillel of Verona and Judah Romano also appreciated his works. These Italian Jews sought to interpret Moses Maimonides' Guide for the Perplexed without adopting the radical Averroistic Aristotelianism of some of their contemporaries. Aquinas also acquired the title Doctor in addition to his renown as the Doctor Communis. Francisco de Vitoria made some significant contributions with his own applications of Aquinas's moral and legal doctrines to the political questions of his day. Vitoria published few works during his own lifetime, but his lectures were immensely popular. Thomas de Vio Cajetan took up the Summa theologiae, and the resulting volumes remain to this day as the standard commentary on Aquinas's masterpiece, published along with the Summa theologiae in the leonine edition.

Keywords: Doctor Communis; Summa theologiae; Guide for the Perplexed; Byzantine theologians

Article.  10742 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; History of Western Philosophy

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