Susan Paxton's Reviews > Francis of Assisi: A New Biography

Francis of Assisi by Augustine Thompson
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May 21, 12

bookshelves: christianity, catholicism
Read from May 15 to 20, 2012

It seems to have taken a Dominican - Augustine Thompson, OP - to write the closest thing to a strictly historical biography of the founder of the Franciscans that we are ever likely to have. Informed by his knowledge of the period, Thompson has carefully sifted through the historical sources for Francis and peeled away the legendary accretions. The portrait that emerges is a more difficult, challenging man than the plaster saint standing in so many birdbaths. The first half of the book is biography; the second half is Thompson's discussion, chapter by chapter, of his historical method and the judgment calls he's made. The bibliography is also exceptionally useful.
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