Importance of the Middle Ages
The Middle Ages was a time period that lasted from about the 5th to the 15th century. During this time, the people had to be more protective because of all of the barbaric attacks thus being more sophisticated. Saint Augustine, Saint Thomas Aquinas, and Peter Abelard were all men who were great philosophers and theologians. If one was to understand the Middle Ages, they would know the philosophical impacts of Saint Augustine, Saint Thomas Aquinas, and Peter Abelard. These three men and their philosophy had nothing to do with the Middle Ages.
Thomas Aquinas, a philosopher and a theologian, was considered one of the best of all times. He was also a fantastic priest. “As a theologian he was responsible in his two masterpieces, the Summa theologiae and the Summa contra gentiles, for the classical systematization of Latin theology; and as a poet he wrote some of the most gravely beautiful Eucharistic hymns in the church's liturgy” (St. Thomas Aquinas). Saint Thomas Aquinas was a man who is still brought up today because of his impressive acts during the Middle Ages. He used his knowledge to learn more and to teach others. At this time period, the church was very important to all people. Saint Thomas Aquinas’s books were read and the things he taught were learned by many. Thomas Aquinas shows his importance because he is still brought up today in the church and liturgy.
Peter Abelard was also a notable philosopher and theologian. On top of that, he was a logician too. “Peter Abelard (1079-1142) was one of the great intellectuals of the 12th century, with especial importance in the field of logic” (Bellows). As a young kid, Peter was constantly being encouraged to learn more from his father. He continuously debated and learned more about different topics. During his teenager years, he called him a peripatetic because he wandered throughout France learning from numerous amounts of people. Because he was so knowledgeable, people would gather around him to hear him lecture about the many topics he knew. The people were even more interested in his speeches when he brought in a deeper religious side of his thoughts because of his previous time in a monastery. Peter Abelard made a huge impact on the people during the Middle Ages
Even though all three of these men are important, Saint Augustine set the ground work for Saint Thomas Aquinas and Peter Abelard. Saint Augustine influenced the world with a strong religious standpoint that still exists today. “Augustine gradually became acquainted with Christian doctrine, and in his mind the fusion of Platonic philosophy with revealed dogmas was taking place” (Portalié, E.). Saint Augustine’s magnificent work in the ancient times led a beginning to a continuation of philosophical teachings in the Middle Ages. After he converted to Christianity, he started getting into academic topics because he was debating other people. This directed Saint Augustine in a path of writing many influential books including, the Confessions, De Civitate Dei (On the City of God), On Christian Doctrine, and, On the Trinity. The majority of his teachings were very religious. Saint Augustine did not directly affect the Middle Ages, but without his earlier work, Thomas Aquinas and Peter Abelard would have been less knowledgeable.
The Middle Ages was a time period of much philosophy and thought. Saint Augustine, Peter Abelard, and Saint Thomas Aquinas are all characters that affected this era in a positive way. Without the understanding of some of the huge accomplishments from these men, one cannot fully see the importance of some of the modern philosophies that originated from the Middle Ages. Not only did the Middle Ages consist of a strong interest in philosophy, theology, and logics, but people were also deeply into Christianity. Saint Augustine, Peter Abelard, and Saint Thomas Aquinas all portrayed excellent thoughts about both topics.
· St. Thomas Aquinas. (2011). Biography.com. Retrieved 10:18, May 3 2011 from http://www.biography.com/articles/St-Thomas-Aquinas-9187231
· Thomas. (n.d.). Thomas Aquinas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved May 3, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Aquinas
· Bellows, H. A. (n.d.). Medieval Sourcebook: Peter Abelard: Historia Calamitatum [Full Text]. FORDHAM.EDU. Retrieved May 3, 2011, from http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/basis/abelard-histcal.html
· Portalié, E. (1907). Life of St. Augustine of Hippo. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved May 4, 2011 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/02084a.htm