Doctor Eximius , a pious and eminent theologian, as Paul V called him, born at Granada, 5 January, 1548; died at Lisbon, 25 September, 1617. He entered the Society of Jesus at Salamanca, 16 June, 1564; in that city he studied philosophy and theology from 1565 to 1570, and was ordained in 1572. He taught philosophy at Avila and at Segovia (1571), and later, theology at Avila and Segovia (1575), Valladolid (1576), Rome (1580-85); Alcalá (1585-92), Salamanca (1592-97), and Coimbra (1597-1616). All his biographers say that he was an excellent religious, practicing mortification, laborious, modest, and given to prayer. He enjoyed such fame for wisdom that Gregory XIII attended his first lecture in Rome ; Paul V invited him to refute the errors of King James of England, and wished to retain him near his person, to profit by his knowledge ; Philip II sent him to the University of Coimbra to give prestige to that institution, and when Francisco Suárez visited the University of Barcelona, the doctors of the university went out to meet him, with the insignia of their faculties. His writings are characterized by depth, penetration and clearness of expression, and they bear witness to their author's exceptional knowledge of the Fathers, and of heretical as well as of ecclesiastical writers. Bossuet said that the writings of Francisco Suárez contained the whole of Scholastic philosophy ; Werner (Franz Francisco Suárez, p. 90) affirms that if Francisco Suárez be not the first theologian of his age, he is, beyond all doubt, among the first; Grotius (Ep. 154, J. Cordesio) recognizes in him one of the greatest of theologians and a profound philosopher, and Mackintosh considers him one of the founders of international law.
In Scholasticism, he founded a school of his own, "Suarism", the chief characteristic principles of which are:
"Suárez classes" were established in several universities --Valladolid, Salamanca (1720), Alcalá (1734)--and various Scholastic authors wrote their works ad mentem Sáii . Charles III suppressed those classes throughout his dominions by a royal decree of 12 August, 1768, and prohibited the use of Jesuit authors, and therefore of Francisco Suárez, in teaching. It is obvious, says Cardinal Gonzalez, that, in so many volumes written by Francisco Suárez, there are to be found some matters of little utility, or the practical or scientific importance of which are not in proportion to the time and space that Francisco Suárez devotes to them. He is also charged with being somewhat diffuse. His book "De Defensione Fidei" was burned at London by royal command, and was prohibited by the Parliament of Paris (1614) on the ground that it contained doctrines that were contrary to the power of sovereigns.
Suárez published his first work, "De Deo Incarnato", at Alcalá, in 1590; he published twelve other volumes, the last of which, "De Defensio Fidei," written against the King of England, was published at Coimbra, in 1613. After his death the Jesuits of Portugal published ten other volumes of his work, between 1619 and 1655. Of all of these works, two different editions were made; the first, at Venice, 23 volumes in folio (1740-1757); and the second in Paris (Vives), 28 volumes (1856-1861). In 1859 Mgr Manlou published another volume in folio, containing six short treatises that had not been previously published. Father De Scorraille (Etudes, Vol. LXIV, pp. 151-175) gave an account of the manuscripts of Francisco Suárez, noting the fact that they were numerous and that he himself possessed seventy-five of them. Many of these and others besides were found by Father Rivière. The works of Francisco Suárez were held in the highest esteem in his day, as is shown by the numerous partial editions that were made of them (Lyons, Salamanca, Madrid, Coimbra, Mayence, Cologne, Paris, Evora, Genoa ), as also by the fact, related by his biographies, that one of the wings of the old college of the Jesuits at Salamanca was restored with the product of the sale of his metaphysical works. A compendium of the theology of Francisco Suárez was published by Father Noel, S.J. (Madrid, 1732); a short epitome of this theological disputes, by the Portuguese Father Francis Soárez, S.J. (Lisbon, 1626), and a compendium of the metaphysics, by Father Gregorio Iturria, S.J. (Madrid, 1901).
Biography Of St Jude
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.
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