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The Catholic Encyclopedia Biography

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“The Catholic Encyclopedia, as its name implies, proposes to give its readers full and authoritative information on the entire cycle of Catholic interests, action and doctrine. What the Church teaches and has taught; what she has done and is still doing for the highest welfare of mankind; her methods, past and present; her struggles, her triumphs, and the achievements of her members, not only for her own immediate benefit, but for the broadening and deepening of all true science, literature and art — all come within the scope of The Catholic Encyclopedia. It differs from the general encyclopedia in omitting facts and information which have no relation to the Church. On the other hand, it is not exclusively a church encyclopedia, nor is it limited to the ecclesiastical sciences and the doings of churchmen… The Editors are fully aware that there is no specifically Catholic science, that mathematics, physiology and other branches of human knowledge are neither Catholic, Jewish, nor Protestant; but when it is commonly asserted that Catholic principles are an obstacle to scientific research, it seems not only proper but needful to register what and how much Catholics have contributed to every department of knowledge… The Editor-in-Chief and the Managing Editor are laymen, as were fully 500 of the contributors, and 150 editorial assistants. With them the clerical editors and contributors have co-operated in full appreciation of the importance of producing a work which in content and style would satisfy the scholar in his study and yet interest the man in the street.”

“Preface,” The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1907


“In all things the object of the Encyclopedia is to give the whole truth without prejudice, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archæology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.”

“Preface,” The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1907

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