By St. Augustine, R. P. H. Green

The De Doctrina Christiana ("On Christian Teaching") is one among Augustine's most crucial works at the classical culture. Undertaken even as the Confessions, it sheds mild at the improvement of Augustine's inspiration, in particular within the parts of ethics, hermeneutics, and sign-theory. This thoroughly new translation offers an in depth yet up-to-date illustration of Augustine's inspiration and expression, whereas a succinct advent and choose bibliography current the insights of contemporary study.

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All teaching is teaching of either things or signs, but things are learnt through signs. What I now call things in the strict sense are things such as logs, stones, sheep, and so on, which are not employed to signify something; but I do not include the log which we read that Moses threw into the bitter waters to make them lose their bitter taste,61 or the stone which 57 ‘Discovery’ or inventio is a technical term of classical rhetoric, defined as ‘the devising of true or plausible matter to make a case convincing’ (Rhet.

BOOK ONE 27 for us,121 since he had it in his power to take it up again. What great confidence do believers have to buttress their hopes, when they consider the mighty things that such a mighty one suffered for those who did not yet believe! And as he is expected to come from heaven as judge of the living and the dead, he instils great fear into the uncommitted, so that they may develop a serious commitment and yearn for him in lives of goodness rather than fear him in lives of wickedness. 32. For what words can express, what thoughts conceive, the reward which he is going to give at the end, seeing that he has already given us, to support us on our journey, so much of his spirit, in order that in the troubles of this life we may have this enormous confidence and delight in one whom we do not yet behold, and seeing that he has also bestowed individual gifts for the consolidation of his church,122 in order that we may perform the tasks that he has indicated not only without murmuring but even with positive enjoyment?

106 25. It is not, then, by coming in a spatial sense but by appearing to mortals in mortal flesh that wisdom is said to have come to us. 110 What then, since he was here already, was the reason for his coming, if not that it pleased God to save those who believed through the foolishness of preaching? 26. 111 When we speak, the word which we hold in our mind becomes a sound in order that what we have in our mind may pass through ears of flesh into the listener's mind: this is called speech. Our thought, however, is not converted into the same sound, but remains intact in its own home, suffering no diminution from 104 Cf.

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