Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Final Words of a Saint


If you were on your deathbed, what would your last words be?

On December 6, 1273, St. Thomas Aquinas uttered these final words:

"Venite, dilecti filii, egredemini in hortum."

Translated:

"Come, beloved sons, go forth into the garden." (Sixtus of Sienna, Bibliotheca Sancta [Frankfurt, 1575], p. 331; as quoted in Sheba by Nicholas Clapp, 28).

Thomas Aquinas was enamoured with the Queen of Sheba. A strange thing for a monk. But on his path to enlightenment, he studied the passion-filled Song of Songs (or Songs of Solomon) with increasing fervor. Some scholars believe that Solomon's songs may have been about the foreign queen, the Queen of the South, aka the Queen of Sheba.

Interesting that St. Thomas Aquinas's final words paraphrased the Song of Songs.

2 comments:

Mandi said...

Heather, i am a BIG fan of yours. I especially loved how real you made the characters in the Jerusalem series. I am excited to hear that you are working on more books. This research blog is so cool (i'm sure you don't hear that very often). What a great way to share your research with people. Also, accessible anywhere. I am fascinated by how people write books, so this is awesome!!

Heather B. Moore said...

I just started this last week, so you are my first comment! I'm so glad you enjoyed the Jerusalem books . . . writing about the Queen of Sheba was no big stretch :)