A Bishop and the Less Privileged in an African Diocese in the Late Roman Empire: Augustine at Hippo Regius
Saddington, D. B.
The Southern African Society for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (SASMARS)
Augustine1 reached the highest levels of a classical education in Africa, first at Madauros (Mdaourouch) near his home town and then in the provincial capital of Carthage (nr. Tunis), before completing his studies in Rome itself, where he probably hoped to find a patron able to secure him a lucrative post in the civil service. But philosophy, and Christianity, intervened. A man of genius, he chose to spend his life in monastic retreat devoted to study and writing. However, he was ordained a priest against his will and, soon afterwards, bishop in a humdrum harbour town. The question to be addressed is how the highly educated and brilliantphilosopher and theologian that he became could respond to the less privileged in his diocese.
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