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Tantum Ergo

St. Thomas Aquinas

Apr 15, 2023

Sing, my tongue, the Savior’s glory,

Of His cross, the mystery, sing;

Lift on high the wondrous trophy,

Tell the triumph of the King:

He, the world's Redeemer, conquers

Death, through death now vanquishing.

Born for us, and for us given;

Son of man, like us below,

He, as Man with men, abiding

Dwells, the seed of life to sow:

He, our heavy griefs partaking,

Thus fulfils His life of woe.

Word made flesh! His word life-giving,

Gives His flesh our meat to be,

Bids us drink His blood, believing,

Through His death, we life shall see:

Blessed they who thus receiving

Are from death and sin set free.

Low in adoration bending,

Now our hearts our God revere;

Faith, her aid to sight is lending,

Though unseen the Lord is near;

Ancient types and shadows ending,

Christ our paschal Lamb is here.

Praise for ever, thanks and blessing,

Thine, O gracious Father, be:

Praise be Thine, O Christ, who bringeth

Life and immortality.

Praise be Thine, Thou quickening Spirit,

Praise through all eternity.


(Thomas Aquinas by Sandro Botticelli.) Between antiquity and modernity stands Thomas Aquinas (ca. 1225–1274). The greatest figure of thirteenth-century Europe in the two preeminent sciences of the era, philosophy and theology, he epitomizes the scholastic method of the newly founded universities. Like Dante or Michelangelo, Aquinas takes inspiration from antiquity, especially Aristotle, and builds something entirely new. Viewed through a theological lens, Aquinas has often been seen as the summit of the Christian tradition that runs back to Augustine and the early Church. Viewed as a philosopher, he is a foundational figure of modern thought. His efforts at a systematic reworking of Aristotelianism reshaped Western philosophy and provoked countless elaborations and disputations among later medieval and modern philosophers.


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