Thomas von Aquin
* 1225 Schloß Roccasecea bei Neapel
† 1274 Fossanova
Thomas of Aquin (also Saint Thomas Aquinas, or Aquino) was born in 1225 in the Roccasecca castle near Naples, Italy as the youngest of the seven children of Count Landulf of Aquin. As a five year old boy, Thomas Aquinas was sent to the monastery Monte Cassino, where he entered the Dominican Order against his family's will in 1244. He later studied in Paris and in 1248 became a lecturer for scholastic philosophy. He received the titles of Doctor universalis and Doctor angelicus on account of his excellent teaching. Thomas Aquinas studied under Albertus Magnus of Cologne from 1248 to 1252. After lecturing in Paris from 1256 until 1259, he taught in Rome, Viterbo, and Orvieto. Thomas Aquinas returned to Naples in 1269. There he occupied the position of prefect of studies for his order and founded a Dominican school in 1272. He left behind a daunting number of writings; according to his head secretary, he dictated to at least three or four secretaries simultaneously - similar to today's chessmasters. On his way to the second Council of Lyon in 1274, Thomas Aquinas passed away in Fossanova. His teachings are not without their contradictions. Nevertheless he was canonized by Pope John XXII in 1323. Thomas Aquinas was named one of the Doctors of the Church in 1567.