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Apologia Pro Vita Sua


Author Information

John Newman, Ian Ker

John Henry Newman (1801 - 1890) was a vicar of Oxford University's church from 1828 - 1842, when his controversial Tract attempting to interpret the 39 Articles of Faith of the Church of England in a Catholic sense, led to him retiring to Littlemore, where he lived in monastic seclusion. He was received into the Catholic Church in 1845 and ordained in 1847. Apologia Pro Vita Sua appeared in 1864. Ian Ker has a MA from Oxford and a Ph.D from Cambridge. He was ordained a Roman Catholic Priest in 1979 and has taught at universities in Britain and the United States. He is the author and editor of sixteen books on Newman, including Newman and the Fullness of Christianity (1993).

Judges' and contributors' comments

Peter Forster: All Anglicans – and Catholics – have to come to terms with Newman, one way or another. This spiritual autobiography is a true classic.

John Pridmore: Newman’s Apologia Pro Vita Sua – his History of My Religious Opinions, as it was first titled – together with Thomas Merton’s The Seven Story Mountain, are the two greatest spiritual autobiographies in the English language. Newman’s work is a sublime piece of English prose, sometimes so touching as to make one howl. (‘Trinity had never been unkind to me. There used to be much snapdragon growing on the walls opposite my freshman’s rooms.’)

Reader comments

John Tate

15 August 2017 @ 15:35

Read this book about 5 years ago when I was doing a study of Newman & his brother Francis. I saw it then as a search for authority in that titanic 19th century when so many religious foundations were being challenged - by the State, by Science, by Rationalism etc. Newman found Rome as his safe haven. Fascinating and very readable.

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