Skip to main content

Gredt, Joseph August


Benedictine philosopher of the Thomistic revival inaugurated by leo xiii; b. Luxembourg, July 30, 1863; d. Rome, Jan. 29, 1940. The son of a teacher, he made his philosophical and theological studies in Luxembourg, was ordained in 1886, and studied in Rome under F. satolli, A. lepidi, T. zigliara, and G. Pecci. He became a Benedictine in 1891 at Seckau, Austria, and served as philosophy professor at San Anselmo, Rome, from 1896 to his death. His main work, based on T. de vio cajetan and ferrariensis, is the comprehensive manual Elementa philosophiae aristotelico-thomisticae (2 v. Rome 18991901). Under the influence of some neoscholastics, the salmanticenses, and especially john of st. thomas, he notably altered the second edition in arrangement and in several theses, while retaining the rigidly scholastic method. Long quotations from Aristotle and Aquinas are of special value. The emphasis is on metaphysics; Gredt argues that aliquid is one of the transcendentals and proposes a sexta via to God's existence from the ordering of the soul toward the Infinite. In cosmology he makes extensive use of the positive sciences. His "natural realism" (De cognitione sensuum externorum, 2d ed. Rome 1924) defends the objectivity of all sense qualities against experimental psychologists and "critical realists." His criticisms of other philosophers, however, are not always reliable. His articles are concerned mostly with cosmology and psychology, and develop Aquinas's doctrine of the real distinction between act and potency.

See Also: scholasticism.

Bibliography: j. a. gredt, Miscellanea philosophica R. P. Josepho Gredt (Rome 1938); Divus Thomas (Fribourg) v.1618 (193840) passim.; "De entitate viali qua in schola thomistica explicatur causalitas instrumentalis," Divus Thomas (Piacenza) 41:413424; "De activitate creaturarum," ibid. 43:339344; Acta Pontificiae Academiae Romanae S. Thomae Aquinatis v.35 (193638); Elementa philosophiae aristotelico-thomisticae (13th ed. rev. Barcelona 1961).

[a. w. mÜller]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Gredt, Joseph August." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . 25 Mar. 2019 <>.

"Gredt, Joseph August." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . (March 25, 2019).

"Gredt, Joseph August." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Retrieved March 25, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.