Today is the memorial of Blessed Severius Boethius, great scholar of (very) Late Antiquity. We know him today mostly because of The Consolation of Philosophy, a work of which this site, the site of a project dedicated to the restoration and digitalization of a 10th century manuscript, says:
The Consolation of Philosophy by Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius, the sixth-century Roman philosopher, poet, and statesman who reconciled himself with the seeming unfairness of life while awaiting execution on false charges of treason, was a powerful text throughout the Middle Ages and Renaissance. It was especially respected in England, where it was repeatedly translated and otherwise transformed into English, starting with none other than Alfred the Great in the ninth century, and including (among others) Geoffrey Chaucer in the fourteenth century, and even Queen Elizabeth in the sixteenth. It is not an exaggeration to claim, as many scholars have done, that one cannot understand much of the literature of the Middle Ages without a knowledge of the Consolation.
Interestingly, there has been conversation on and off over recent centuries on the question of whether Boethius was even a Christian. The old Catholic Encyclopedia treats the issue - as it stood a century or so ago.
Tradition began very early to represent Boethius as a martyr for the Christian Faith. It was believed that among the accusations brought against him was devotion to the Catholic cause, which at that time was championed by the Emperor Justin against the Arian Theodoric. In the eighth century this tradition had assumed definite shape, and in many places Boethius was honoured as a martyr, and his feast observed on the twenty-third of October. In recent times, critical scholarship has gone to the opposite extreme, and there have not been wanting critics who asserted that Boethius was not a Christian at all, or that, if he was, he abjured the Faith before his death. The foundation for this opinion is the fact that in the "Consolations of Philosophy" no mention is made of Christ or of the Christian religion. A saner view, which seems at the present time to be prevalent among scholars, is that Boethius was a Christian and remained a Christian to the end.
That he was a Christian is proved by his theological tracts, some of which, as we shall see, are undoubtedly genuine. That he remained a Christian is the obvious inference from the ascertained fact of his continued association with Symmachus; and if the "Consolations of Philosophy" bears no trace of Christian influence, the explanation is at hand in the fact that it is an entirely artificial exercise, a philosophical dialogue modelled on strictly pagan productions, a treatise in which, according to the ideas of method which prevailed at the time, Christian feeling and Christian thought had no proper place. Besides, even if we disregard certain allusions which some interpret in a Christian sense, there are passages in the treatise which seem plainly to hint that, after philosophy has poured out all her consolations for the benefit of the prisoner, there are more potent remedies (validiora remedia) to which he may have recourse. There can be no reasonable doubt, then, that Boethius died a Christian, though it is not easy to show from documentary sources that he died a martyr for the Catholic Faith. The absence of documentary evidence does not, however, prevent us from giving due value to the constant tradition on this point. The local cult of Boethius at Pavia was sanctioned when, in 1883, the Sacred Congregation of Rites confirmed the custom prevailing in that diocese of honouring St. Severinus Boethius, on the 23rd of October.