The End of Europe's Middle Ages
Although most scholars attribute the Imitation of Christ (image of text) to Thomas a Kempis, some uncertainty remains. Written in the mid-1400s, the group of treatises are a guide to salvation through the practise of personal piety and spirituality. Drawing heavily on scripture for authority, the individual books or chapters provide assistance to the truly religious searching for an inner spiritual transformation and a mystical union with God without renouncing the world. Although a Kempis was an Augustinian and part of the Imitation is addressed to monastics, the work emphasizes individual spirituality over institutions or ceremonies. The large number of surviving copies is an indication of the popularity of the Imitation amongst good Christians living in the secular world.
The End of Europe's Middle Ages / Applied History Research Group / University of Calgary