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Augustine of Hippo: A Life Hardcover – 15 Oct 2008


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 177 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; 1 edition (15 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199568308
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199568307
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 2.3 x 13.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,000,198 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

a skilfully and colourfully woven narrative of Augustine's life and times. (Margaret Lane. The Journal of Theological Studies)

Chadwick's biography is full of deftly placed detail and a sharpness that matches its subject's...(and) would ignite or revive interest in Augustine in almost any intellegent reader... (Lucy Beckett, Times Literary Supplement)

Gem of a biography. (Diarmaid MacCulloch, Literary Review)

Augustine's intellectual development is recounted with clarity and warmth...Chadwick's deep scholarship is evident throughout this book. (Methodist Recorder)

Thank goodness we had Chadwick, level-headed and drenched in the sources, to unravel the threads of Augustine's musings. (Jonathan Wright, Catholic Herald)

Read Chadwick, then read him again. You will learn. (Jonathan Wright, Catholic Herald)

Chadwick succeeds in a spectacular manner. (R A Marcus, The Tablet)

Uncanny skill in catching...the odd revealing detail, moving about Augustine's vast textual output with magisterial ease. (R. A. Markus, The Tablet)

His Augustine emerges from his pages as an altogether more human and more humane figure than we meet in many of his interpreters. (R A Markus, The Tablet)

About the Author

Professor Henry Chadwick (1920-2008) enjoyed international renown as one of the leading church historians of the twentieth century. He held senior appointments at both Oxford and Cambridge Universities, latterly as Emeritus Regius Professor of Divinity, Cambridge. Chadwick's scholarship was complemented by his active involvement in church life. Ordained a priest in the Church of England in 1944, he developed a deep commitment to church unity and took a leading role in the Anglican and Roman Catholic dialogues of the mid-1970s. Chadwick authored numerous books and articles throughout his career. At Oxford University Press he held series editorship of Oxford Early Christian Texts and Oxford Early Christian Studies, and co-edited the Oxford History of the Christian Church series with his brother, Professor Owen Chadwick. His acclaimed translation of Augustine's Confessions is available from Oxford World Classics.

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Mark Santer on 24 Feb. 2010
Format: Hardcover
This a masterly work by a master of his subject. Augustine was one of the most subtle minds of antiquity, and a man who explored his own mind by putting it into words of compelling power. Through the survival of his works he also played a decisive role in forming the mind and shaping the theological and political discourse of Western Europe until quite recent times. The late Henry Chadwick has written a study of this astonishing man which is at once clear, penetrating and accessible. While locating Augustine in the (to us ) strange intellectual and social setting of the late Roman Empire, he opens up issues in Augutine's life and thought which still have the power to bother us.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mr. C. J. Humble on 12 Dec. 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Henry Chadwick describes his work as an attempt to "introduce (Augustine) and his ideas in the intellectual and political context of his age". In doing so he addresses two fundamental problems when trying to make sense of Augustine: the remoteness in time and character of the late classical world from our own; and the many-sidedness of Augustine. He was a scholar, orator, philosopher, teacher, writer and bishop; a person at the heart of the ancient world and its encounter with Christianity; someone inwardly divided and conflicted between who he found himself to be and that to which he aspired. In that last he has exercised his most powerful contemporary appeal, but it is an appeal that has resonated down the centuries, and provoked the finest minds to grapple with his sombre estimate of human nature. The shadow of his thought falls over the history of Christian thought, rising to especial prominence at moments of crisis. Both Luther and especially Calvin recognised in his restless introspection a framework with which to make sense of issues that time and again come to haunt Christianity: freedom and grace, and the nature of the Church in the world. In modern times the greatest Christian theologians can be understood as Augustinians,and they are drawn from both sides of the divide created by the Reformation: Karl Barth, Hans von Balthasar and Joseph Ratzinger.

Chadwick's achievement is to link a thorough understanding of Augustine's intellectual hinterland in Neoplatonism and Manichaeism with his developing maturity as a Christian leader and teacher. Augustine the bishop is as powerfully delineated as the writer and thinker: "The experience of doing the work of a bishop made far deeper and more obvious changes in Augustine's character than even his conversion at Milan ten years before...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By philosophos on 6 Feb. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Henry Chadwick is an excellent writer. This book, like his history of the early Christian church,is a delight to read. The man is clear in his presentation of the facts and issues and makes all, even the most complex events and ideas that he recounts stand in a new, a better light than other accounts that I have read of Augustine.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Henry Chadwick's books are always stimulating and this is no exception. If like me you had always planned to read about Augustine but never got around to it, this short book is an excellent way to begin. Augustine' s life and times and his opinions are sketched out in a clear, easy to understand way and in a way sympathetic to Augustine showing his good points and his bad ones!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A fascinating account of an intriguing figure of Christian belief. This biography captures the important phases of this key figures life and examines the other faiths that were available at the time.
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