G.K. Chesterton and Hillaire Beloc


I spent the day reading the Great Heresies by Beloc. I had not realised he was largely repsonsible for the conversion of Chesterton to the Catholic faith. Chesterton is another author I have not read. Which specific books of Chesterton would anyone recommend and also what other beloc books should I read?


Orthodoxy by Chesterton. :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:


Seconded. Orthodoxy should be required reading for every Catholic.

– Mark L. Chance.


Many thanks.


The Everlasting Man is another classic. It’s a bit difficult in places but you can still get a great benefit from it without knowing all of the references.


Go to Amazon.com and search by the two authors names, you will turn up a number of works by both authors. Belloc’s two books on the history of the reformation and a collection of short biographies of the main characters are both quite informative and interesting.


The Man Who Was Thursday is definately a keeper by Chesterton as well.


The Dumb Ox



are the books I own. The Dumb Ox is out of this world! The other two great as well.


I read that too…Weird but a good read.


For an overview of Chesterton, you might want *G.K Chesterton: The Apostle of Common Sense *and *Common Sense 101: Lessons from G. K. Chesterton *both of which are by Dale Ahlquist.

Here is a short article by Ahlquist about Chesterton:



Belloc’s The Path to Rome, full of his thoughts spun off from tramping at night through Europe to Rome on his own personal pilgrimage. Full of his line drawings and ditties; odes to wine, comments on the bread and cheese he encountered that day, shot through with fierce, vigorous Catholic joy.

Chesterton’s fiction. The Poet and the Lunatic, which contains a short story I have used constantly when trying to explain how the natural is the named; how the bounded is the free; how the orthodox is the wild; how to be alive is to be defined rather than undefined, etc. Chesterton is the master of the paradox, and his outlook is extremely refreshing in our cookie-cutter public age.


“How the Reformation Happened” and “Europe and the Faith” by Belloc will rock your world. Also “The Servile State”.

Belloc is particularly important to read because his understanding of the Muslim world is quite excellent—he predicted the rise of Islamism we face today.

He was also quite a colorful character—it was said of him (by Chesterton, I think) that if Mass took more than 45 minutes he suspected the priest of heresy. :wink:


Chesterton’s biography of St. Francis is very good.


As is his biography of St Thomas Aquinas, “The Dumb Ox”. Excellent, short, readable.



I’ve seen these in a single volume. I have them both.[/size]


This is amazing. Thanks to all of you.
I’ve asked my sister-in-law if she has any more Beloc books. She told me she has some Chesterton books so they should reach me today.


:thumbsup: :slight_smile:


I am a minority voice on this, but I haven’t found Chesterton to be worthwhile. To be fair, I’ve only read Orthodoxy, and started on Everlasting Man, but didn’t finish.

The man reads really well if you’re impressed by cleverness. But I didn’t find much substance underneath the rhetoric.

As for Belloc, I have no idea. Just wanted to chime in on Chesterton.


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