Liturgical Latin: The Poetry of Thomas Aquinas

Liturgical Latin: The Poetry of Thomas Aquinas

Course Description: St. Thomas Aquinas is (rightly) best known for his theological and philosophical writings, but the Angelic Doctor also wrote a number of poetic hymns, many of which have been incorporated into the Catholic liturgy. In this course we will read, examine, and discuss St. Thomas’s hymns from the Office of the feast of Corpus Christi, written in the mid-1260s and still prescribed in the Church’s liturgy today.

For the sake of comparison and as time allows, we will also read and discuss other relevant writings of Aquinas, as well as other medieval Christian hymns.


Level: Familiarity with Latin grammar, morphology, and vocabulary is preferred, though not strictly required.

Textbook: Instructor will provide materials.

Sections capped at: 5 students. If the course is sold-out, please fill out this waiting-list form.

Mondays, 5:00pm U.S. Eastern Time


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Joshua Gregor

Joshua Gregor is head of the Latin department at Sacred Heart Academy in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He has taught Latin courses ranging from beginning grammar up through Cicero and Horace, as well as medieval and Renaissance Latin. With Paideia he has previously taught the liturgical hymnody of St. Thomas Aquinas. Joshua holds a B.A. in philosophy from the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum in Rome, with a thesis on William Wordsworth’s Romantic theory of poetry. Afterwards he received an M.A. in linguistics from Indiana University, focusing on Latin and Romance languages. Joshua additionally spent several years in seminary, where he also studied humanities, theology, and Gregorian Chant.