Chesterton’s Autobiography, published posthumously in the autumn of 1936, was the last flowering of his literary gifts. It was a bittersweet achievement but a very worthy addition to the Chesterton canon. And since it was completed before his passing, it seems fitting here to discuss its contents and something of the critical reception it had.
[Chesterton] had, said Mr. Eccles, an intuitive mind. He had, too, read more than was realized.
—MAISIE WARD (1943)
Mr. Chesterton’s little volume makes one of the pleasantest introductions to St. Thomas that could be desired.
—TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT(1933)
It would be easy to say that Chesterton was drawn to Saint Thomas Aquinas because they were much alike.
There is at the back of all our lives an abyss of light, more blinding and unfathomable than any abyss of darkness; and it is the abyss of actuality, of existence, of the fact that things truly are, and that we are ourselves incredibly and sometimes almost incredulously real.
—G. K. CHESTERTON
These were some of the most beautiful and life-affirming words that Chesterton ever wrote. They were a kind of centerpiece to one of the great works of his later career, Chaucer (published in 1932).