Suarez, Francis

, a Spanish Jesuit, born at Grenada, Jan. 5, 1548, was a professor of reputation at Alcala, at Salamanca, and at Rome. He was afterwards invited to Coimbra in Portugal, where he became the principal professor of divinity. He is an author of the most voluminous kind: his works extended to twenty -three volumes, in folio; and so extraordinary was his memory, that if any passage was cited from them, he could' immediately go on to the end of the chapter or book. Yet, with all his talents, his examiners had such an indifferent opinion of him, that it was with some difficulty he gained admission into the order of Jesuits. He died at Lisbon, Sept. 25, 1617. By order of pope Paul V. he wrote a book “against the errors of the English sect,” which James I. caused to be publicly burnt at St. Paul’s. “Happy should I be,” said he, “could I seal with my blood the truths I have defended with my pen.” Yet unpopular as this work must have rendered his name in this country, his treatise on law, “Tractatus de Legibus,” was printed in London in 1679, in folio. His works are chiefly on the subjects of metaphysics, morality, and theology; and what seems to recommend them is, that he almost every where relates and explains, with great fidelity and precision, the different sentiments of divines concerning the subjects on which he treats. The Jesuits consider Suarez as the greatest and best scholastic divine their order has produced, and lavish the highest encomiums upon him. He was the principal author of the system of Congruism, which is at bottom only that of Molina, although, perhaps, better adapted to the method and language of the | theolorians, and disguised under a less offensive form. Father Noel, a French Jesuit, made an abridgment of the works of this commentator, which was published at Geneva in 173;2, in folio. There is a prolix life of him by AntonyIgnatius Deschamps, printed at Perpignan in 1671, a 4to of 800 pages. 1


Auton o Bibl. Hisp.—Moreri.—Dict. Hist.—Dodd’s Ch. Hist. vol. II.