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Augustine of Hippo: A Biography #2020

Augustine of Hippo A Biography This classic biography was first published thirty years ago and has since established itself as the standard account of Saint Augustine s life and teaching The remarkable discovery recently of a consi

  • Title: Augustine of Hippo: A Biography
  • Author: Peter R.L. Brown
  • ISBN: 9780520227576
  • Page: 179
  • Format: Paperback
  • Augustine of Hippo: A Biography By Peter R.L. Brown, This classic biography was first published thirty years ago and has since established itself as the standard account of Saint Augustine s life and teaching The remarkable discovery recently of a considerable number of letters and sermons by Augustine has thrown fresh light on the first and last decades of his experience as a bishop These circumstantial texts have led PetThis classic biography was first published thirty years ago and has since established itself as the standard account of Saint Augustine s life and teaching The remarkable discovery recently of a considerable number of letters and sermons by Augustine has thrown fresh light on the first and last decades of his experience as a bishop These circumstantial texts have led Peter Brown to reconsider some of his judgments on Augustine, both as the author of the Confessions and as the elderly bishop preaching and writing in the last years of Roman rule in north Africa Brown s reflections on the significance of these exciting new documents are contained in two chapters of a substantial Epilogue to his biography the text of which is unaltered He also reviews the changes in scholarship about Augustine since the 1960s A personal as well as a scholarly fascination infuse the book length epilogue and notes that Brown has added to his acclaimed portrait of the bishop of Hippo.

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    1 thought on “Augustine of Hippo: A Biography

    1. Peter Brown is a beautiful writer Even if you have no interest in Augustine, you could read this book and simply be lost Brown s command of language However, this is the defining biography of Augustine Brown has gone back and updated this book towards the end of his career This is a gift to the world Brown covers Augustine as a philosopher, theologian, Bishop, man, son and father This is a long read, but it certainly belongs on your to read list.

    2. I read the old version, which was fine Augustine spanned the gap between the classic world and the emerging world of the middle ages He started life as a Manichee and flirted with neo platonism before settling down to life as the bishop of Hippo in Roman Africa His was a very Roman African kind of career a phrase which meant nothing to me before this book Roman African Christianity was a purer form that was less influenced by decadent Roman Italian ways In fact, the main schism of Augustine s ti [...]

    3. A very difficult read, but easily the standard secondary source on Augustine The broad contours of Augustine s life are well known, but Brown places them within a theological framework He takes intellectual themes from controversies in Augustine s life thus the Latin ish chapter titles and retells the story around these themes It makes for somewhat difficult reading at times, but it is very illuminating.I cannot imagine a better work that neatly captures Augustine s sitz im leben than this work [...]

    4. I think this is a great Biography of Augustine, but I wish there was some focus and clarification on Augustine s theology I think I will have to explore some books on that specifically However, Brown does focus on aspects of Augustine s Theology and it is interesting to see it in contrast to many views of Augustine today Overall very good and I learned a lot.

    5. There are some problematic aspects to Brown s biography of Augustine of Hippo, most of which, if not before, becomes apparent in the Epilogue included in the revised edition We should remember that in the 1960s some of the best work on the thought of Augustine stressed those moments where he appeared to have changed his mind on important matters These studies examined the manner in which Augustine s progressive absorption of the Christian Scriptures, his pastoral experience and his wrestling wit [...]

    6. Peter Brown s Augustine of Hippo is a brilliant tour de force that will delight any reader familiar with the history of theological thought or the late Roman empire It recounts the life and intellectual struggles of a fascinating person, elucidates the writings of an important philosopher and gives a brilliant portrait of African society in the fifth century.The first thing to understand is that Brown has written a true biography not a speculation of the life of man known through his actions and [...]

    7. Brilliant I had this on my shelf for a year before I got to it the size and subject matter just seemed a bit daunting but it turned out to be engrossing and readable Brown is a wonderful writer though his style includes use of commas than I am accustomed to , and he does a beautiful job balancing the personal details of Augustine s life with the history of the period I would assume that most readers going in to this would have a basic familiarity with traditional Roman religion, the history of [...]

    8. If you re a student of history, and have been forced to read any previous Peter Brown, you will know that his usual writing style amounts to stuffing an overwhelming chunk of ideas into a very small amount of pages What would take one historian 50 pages to explain, Brown can perfectly synthesis in 5 His use of language is intensely precise and rigorously academic a quality that in practice should make his writing seem stuffy if not for the sheer breadth of his ideas Augustine of Hippo A Biograph [...]

    9. I read the old edition Titanic is the word that came to mind as I read Augustine, his theology, his philosophy, his pastoral ministry, his interaction with the state, his defenses of orthodoxy come alive in this wonderful biography by Peter Brown Brown emphasizes Augustine s intellectual labors and how his thought matured over the years I was especially convicted by his love for his flock and his compassion towards them Brown s discussion of the Donatist controversy and the Pelagian controversy [...]

    10. I was somewhat skeptical that this book would be worthwhile, having been through the confessions a number of times and having Augustine s life story pretty much together in my own head I thought an Augustine biography would be redundant, having already read the one written by the saint himself For some reason, the stupidity of this attitude did not make itself aware immediately fortunately, it only took the first few pages of Brown s book to disabuse me of my philistinism.Brown s research is met [...]

    11. The best thing about Peter Brown is that he s an historian writing a biography Sounds obvious, right But he s not a psychologizing, or moralizing, or theologizing He s historicizing This biography from the late 60s his new edition left the original pretty much intact, and just added a preface and epilogue with information about recent discoveries of sermon texts and letter transcriptions, with the attendant implications in thought , was among the first to situate such a major figure from antiqui [...]

    12. The past is a foreign country When we read history, we shouldn t seek to necessarily read moral tales and place ourselves at the helm Instead, we must seek to have humility and strive to understand the characters in their place and time I had to constantly remind myself of this when reading Peter Brown s magisterial biography of Augustine of Hippo, or known affectionately by most as St Augustine Brown s prose and integration of source material in this biography is remarkable At times, even beaut [...]

    13. An excellent picture of the man and what shaped him Brown is an adept biographer his treatment of St Augustine reads almost like a novel I would be a lot enthusiastic about biographies if they were this well presented This served as a great tool to prompt interest in Augustine s works, namely, his confessions and City of God.

    14. This is probably one of the best biography s I have ever read It creates a realistic portrait of one of the most important figures in Christian history I highly recommend

    15. Augustine of Hippo was first published in 1967 and then recently revised in 2000, with a new epilogue that dealt with a whole new breed of archeological evidence that emerged between the two dates Augustine lived from 354 430 AD While this may seem distant from the modern consciousness, Brown has a special gift for immersing us in Augustine s writing style which is timeless and relating it to the history and culture of the period Another wonderful technique of Brown s biography is to let Augusti [...]

    16. I never finished reading this book, and it s not my favorite by Brown, however, I learned a lot about Augustine and filled in my mental picture of the milieu of early Christianity which interested me so obsessively when I was in my thirties If you want to read a history of Augustine that is nearly as readable as a novel but infinitely informative, this is the book for you

    17. The go to book for a broad overview of Augustine s life and theology Brown really gives his reader a sympathetic look at the ancient world I first read this book in an Augustine seminar, with primary sources alongside the complementary sections, and it was a great way to learn Augustine.

    18. Writing biographies of ancient people is a difficult art Many popular biographies of figures like Cleopatra, Cicero, Augustus, and other Greco Roman movers and shakers quickly devolve into fantastic conjecture that borders on sheer fiction, especially when historical evidence is sparse for certain periods of people s lives For that reason, as a classicist, I tend to stay away from biographies Great Men history is a relic of a oppressive academic era, and social, economic, and political trends t [...]

    19. This is an excellent historical biography I am amazed by Brown s grasp of Augustine s works and that he wrote this so early in his career The epilogue provides a very useful and interesting analysis of the new evidence of the Dolbeau sermons and the Divjak letters In epilogue Brown also describes how Augustine and late antique scholarship has changed since the 1960s, and is able to analyze his own development as a historian since then He points out areas of weakness in his early scholarship Ther [...]

    20. Mijn plan was om voordat ik aan de Belijdenissen zou beginnen eventjes een biografie van Augustinus te lezen Dat eventjes viel behoorlijk tegen Deze biografie, geschreven door Peter Brown, is blijkbaar d biografie van Augustinus geschreven voor professionals n leken Maar dan wel voor leken die al precies weten wat Maniche sme, Donatisme en Pelagianisme inhouden en precies op de hoogte zijn van alle kerkelijke ins en outs van die tijd, niet voor echte leken Hard werken dus.

    21. This biography of Saint Augustine is ideal for someone not part of the Christian elect but yet interested in the development of Western Catholic Christianity The focus is primarily on the personal and professional experiences in Augustine s life that helped shape the development of ideas on original sin, predestination, and grace espoused by one of the doctors of the early church.Part of what makes Peter Brown such a great historian is that he is physically unable to write a book that doesn t go [...]

    22. I read the 1967 edition without the epilogues, so I am aware that the book is dated in parts however, Peter Brown s classic biography of Augustine of Hippo has got to be the greatest biography I have ever read Brown gives his reader a human portrait of a complex figure in the history of Western Christianity Such an engrossing read Despite the highly unpleasant teachings in Augustine s writings against Julian of Eclanum, I feel that the Augustinian pessimism is actually quite comforting Our imper [...]

    23. Brown takes the reader on an epic journey It took me a long time to read this book Reading it was like a long mountain bike in the Sierra painful, long, beautiful, and worthy Brown s book is not a casual read but the reader will be rewarded by getting to know a godly man who lived in a world so different and so distant from our own Augustine lived in Roman, Christian Africa Only after reading this book do I even have a hint of what that culture was like eating roasted peacock, studying and writi [...]

    24. This is the definitive bio of Augustine What Bainton once was for Luther The 2nd edition is a whole new work I met Peter Brown in Princeton, where he taught, a few times, and he just oozed brilliance I have nothing new to add except an anecdote that tells it all The story goes that Brown was so focused and mature that he came to the idea of writing this definitive critical bio of Augustine while in his early teens He focused all of his energy on it, methodically begining to maste the secondary a [...]

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