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Meditation In The Service Of Catholic Orthodoxy: Peter Canisius' Notae Evangelicae

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Chapter Summary

Historians, who take a serious interest in the life of the soul, in the way in which human beings have thought or prayed or meditated, must confine their research to sensory objects, to texts or visual representations. Canisius greatest monument to meditation was a product of his last years. Abraham Gemperlin printed the voluminous Notae evangelicae, to use the abbreviated title, in Fribourg in two stout quarto volumes in 15911593. The origin for the idea of the Notae dates back at least to 1570. The argumenta elaborate on the gospel text. Like Erasmus paraphrases on the New Testament, they amplify the text instead of summarizing it. With the argumenta Canisius immediately begins to direct the readers interpretation. The Church Fathers, next to the Bible, were highly useful instruments for the inculcation of Catholic orthodoxy.

Keywords: Catholic orthodoxy; meditation; Notae evangelicae; Peter Canisius

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