Thomas Kempis was a Medieval Catholic monk and author of The Imitation of Christ, considered to be one of the best-known Christian books on devotion. He was apparently (accidentally) buried alive, because splinters were later found embedded under the fingernails of his corpse. He was denied canonization on the grounds that a saint would not fight death. The Imitation of Christ was first written in Latin in 1418. The book was divided into four books and is intended to assist the soul in finding holiness and communion with God. It was first written in verse form. The statements are written for monastics and ascetics. Within all its reflections runs the counsel of self-renunciation.