The Book displays. from first to last, a sincere and zealous effort to . trace back this and that phrase or incident to its original source. And this is one of its most important and valuable features. But the Translator cannot wholly free himself from a lurking suspicion that in this matter due weight may not always have been given to the thirteenth-century knowledge of the Bible itself. That heretical movement which figures so largely in the following pages was admittedly marked by an intense devotion to the Holy Scriptures, and a remarkable familiarity with that vernacular Bible which was one of its most precious fruits. And if, as we know to be the case, the orthodox layman Dante Alighieri possessed a knowledge of the Old and New Testaments which might put to shame not a few Protestants of today; why should not the learned cleric Thomas of Celano have enjoyed a like familiarity with the sacred texts? If this be so, may it not be unnecessary, where the .. First or Second Life quotes some well known passage from theGospels or' Epistles, to adduce a previous quotation of the same source from St. Gregory, or Cassian, or Caesarius of Heisterbach? It is however, of course possible that the passage in question, though known directly to Celano, was in the particular instance called to mind in virtue of its secondary association. And furthermore this criticism even if stringently applied, would touch but a few details of the argument, which is built on a very broad basis.
Nino Tamassia, Brother Hermenegild TOSF Lonsdale Ragg, Paperback, ISBN 10: 149522693X, ISBN 13: 9781495226939