2O G. K. CHESTERTON indifferent to accuracy. But in spite of this habitual care- lessness his knowledge and memory were prodigious. Throughout his whole adult life, but in particular through- out the last half of it after his reception into the Catholic Church, problems of religion wholly overshadowed all other problems in his mind. Indeed, to him politics and literature and all the other activities of man were only of importance in so far as they could be made of service to the cause of religion. His reception into the Catholic Church, although it was to him immensely the most important event of his private life, had little effect on his literary develop- ment. For the religious problems which he had cared to discuss had always been the large questions of the being of God and Man and Christ rather than the precise details of the nature or residence of authority. Therefore there was little, if anything, in such an earlier work as Orthodoxy, written many years before his reception into the Catholic Church, which he would not have been willing to repeat at the end of his life. Yet to attempt a biography of St. Thomas Aquinas did seem to many a challenge to fate. * Francis of Assisi' they said, * Yes. There is a man who has won the affection of all mankind. That is a natural subject for the popularizer. But would it not be wiser to leave Aquinas to the specialist ?' The event proved the exact opposite. The remarkable revival of Thomism in modern Europe has indeed been the begetter of specialized works of scholarship of the greatest value. Yet there is a great danger in leaving a revival solely to the specialists—a danger that we shall not be allowed to see the wood for the trees. It was proved that Chesterton's general commentary was exactly what the general reader needed. Thomist scholars were the first and most generous in their praise. Professor Etienne Gilson, perhaps the most learned of living Thomists, said on reading this book, * Chesterton makes one despair. I have been studying St. Thomas all my life and I could never have written such a book'.