Born at Valladolid, Spain, 1526; died at Seville 21 February, 1616. When twenty years of age he entered the Society of Jesus, and after completing his studies taught moral theology for twelve years at the College of Monterey, and subsequently filled the posts of master of novices for twelve more years, of rector for seventeen years, and of spiritual father at Cordova for eleven years. As master of novices he had under his charge Francis Francisco Suárez, the celebrated theologian. Alonso's characteristics in these offices were care, diligence, and charity. He was a religious of great piety and candour, hating all pride and ostentation. It was said of him by those who were personally acquainted with him, that his character and virtues were accurately depicted in "The Practice of Christian and Religious Perfection ", published at Seville, 1609. This work is based on the material which he colected for his spiritual exhortations tohis brethren, and published at the request of his superiors. Although the book thus written was primarily intended for the use of his religious brethren, yet he destined it also for the profit and edification of other religious and of laymen in the world. Of set purpose it avoids the loftier flights of mysticism and all abstruse speculation. It is a book of practical instructions on all the virtues which go to make up the perfect Christian life, whether lived in the cloister or in the world. It became popular at once, and it is much used today by all classes of Christians as it was when it first became known. More than twenty-five edtions of the original Spanish have been issued, besides extracts and abridgements. Moe than sixty editions have appeared in French in seven different translations, twenty in Italian, at least ten in German, and eight in Latin. An English translation from the French by Fr. Antony Hoskins, S.J., was printed at St. Omer in 1612. The best known English translation, often reprinted, is that which first appeared in London, 1697, from the French of Abbé Regnier des Marais. P.O. Shea issued in New York an edition adapted to general use in 1878. The book has been translated into nearly all the European languages and into many of those of the East. No other work of the author was published. Gilmary Shea left a translation of the work which has never been published.
More Catholic Encyclopedia
Browse Encyclopedia by Alphabet
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Browse the Catholic Encyclopedia by Topic
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online