Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Thomas Tamburini

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Moral theologian, born at Caltanisetta in Sicily, 6 March, 1591; died at Palermo 10 October, 1675. He entered the Society of Jesus when fifteen years old; there he became distinguished for extraordinary virtue and a rare talent for teaching. Alter a successful course of studies he held the professorship of philosophy four years, of dogmatic theology seven years, of moral theology seventeen years, and during thirteen years was rector of various colleges. His writings are: "Methodus expeditæ confessionis" (5 vols., Rome, 1647); "De communione" (Palermo, 1649); "Explicatio decalogi" (Venice, 1654, 1707; Milan, 1655; Munich, 1659); "De saorificio missæ" (3 vols Antwerp, 1656); "De bulla cruciata" with other works (Palermo, 1663); "Juris divini, naturalis et eccles. exposito" (3 vols., Palermo, 1659-60). All these works exhibited solidity of doctrine and elegance of style and went through several editions. Though severe towards himself, Tamburini, when deciding cases of conscience for others, was inclined to follow the milder views which he found reputable authors declaring probable. This is the basis of the accusation of laxity frequently brought against him, and led to his controversy with Vincent Baron. Tamburini published a refutation of the attacks of his adversary under the title, "Germana doctrina R. P. Th. Tamburini, S. J." In determining the value of Tamburini's works, it is well to recall the criticism of St. Alphonsus Liguori in his "Theologia Moralis": "Let us add a word about this author [Tamburini], who is not estimated by many at his full value. It cannot be denied that he was apt to consider some opinions probable which do not deserve that note; hence he must be used with caution. But when Tamburini establishes his own opinions, he shows that he is a thorough theologian and solves the questions by reducing them to their last principles. Competent judges will find that the opinions which he then sets down as the more tenable are in the majority of cases the more correct".

DE FELLER, Dict. Hist., VIII, 353; HURTER, Nomenclator, II, 270; SOMMERVOGEL, Bibliothèque, VII, 1830.

John M. Fox.