The Imitation of Christ

Thomas A Kempis

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Introducing a new edition of The Imitation of Christ by Thomas A Kempis, extensively illustrated with prints by Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld and featuring many bible passages from the RSVCE Bible.

This text has long been a treasure trove for Catholics around the world. With its beautiful illustrations and carefully selected Bible passages, this new edition brings the timeless wisdom of Thomas A Kempis to life like never before.

First published over 500 years ago, The Imitation of Christ has been revered by Catholics for centuries as a guide to a more meaningful and spiritual life. This new edition retains the book’s original message while presenting it in a fresh and modern format, making it more accessible and relevant to today’s readers.

The inclusion of Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld’s prints adds a new dimension to the book, allowing readers to visualize the messages contained within. Meanwhile, the use of RSVCE Bible passages adds depth and context to Kempis’ teachings.

Whether you’re a devout Catholic or simply seeking to deepen your spirituality, this edition of The Imitation of Christ will be a welcome addition to your library. Its message of humility, compassion, and devotion is as relevant today as it was when it was first written.

A Note from the Publisher

This current (2023) edition of The Imitation of Christ is not a new translation. It is the result of combining and refining the texts of various English translations – texts consulted have included versions by Richard Challoner, William Benham, Richard Whytford and Wilfrid Raynals, Aloysius Croft and Harold Bolton, John Payne, and The American Tract Society’s edition.

The various translations consulted have no established convention with regard to the numbering of the verses. This edition divides the text by ‘thoughts’, or elements of the narrative, into discrete numbered verses. This has resulted in some short numbered passages, and other longer ones, depending on the context and the content.

The old tradition of capitalizing words associated with God has been adopted – so we have God’s Law, but human law; we have Heaven, and the heavens; and Divine Will, as opposed to human will. Words that belong to God, such as Holy, Grace, and Mystery, are capitalized unless the context requires otherwise.

References to thee, thine, and wilt have been replaced by You, Your, and will.

The third and fourth books are presented here as conversations between Christ and the Disciple, with appropriate headings for clarity. This is a convention used in some previous editions, such as that by John Payne, but it is by no means universal.

Bible verses are mostly from the Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE), with a few being from the RSV2CE.

The illustrations used in this volume are by the German printmaker Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld (1794 – 1872). He designed 240 engravings for his illustrated Picture Bible,1 a project which arose from his visit to London in 1851, and which was executed between 1852 and 1860.

Feedback regarding errors, or suggestions for improvement in future editions, is welcome and can be directed to

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