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Religious Thought of Augustine, Bishop of Hippo

In the background of the formulation of the Augustinian articulation and analysis Judaism is Fremantle's characterization of the medieval philosophical period as an age of belief. The doctrines of institutional Catholicism that age were most systematically articulated in the post-apostolic period by Augustine of Hippo, whose philosophy and theology functions very much as an introduction to the intellectual history of Christian Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire, from Augustine (354-430) to William of Ockham (1300-1349). The central fact of intellectual discourse is that throughout that period, despite many disputes about theology, ethics, morality, and politics, the world as a whole shared a vision of the world predicated of the Christian and specifically Catholic thought. Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, spoke with the strongest doctrinal authority. After Paul the Apostle and before Thomas Aquinas, he was the chief theologian of the Roman church, which in the Middle Ages became the chief locus of European institutional stability. The most prominent minority religious group with a presence in medieval Christian Europe comprised Jews, and Jews were also a minority presence in the part of the world controlled by Islam, from the latter seventh century A.D. onward.

Although Christianity as an institutional apparatus and system of belief came to dominate the eastern Mediterranean from the first through much of the seventh centuries A.D., Judaism as a religion predated Christianity and survived the suppression of Hellenistic religious practice. Because Christianity was an outgrowth of Judaism, a philosophical encounter between the two lines of religious thought was inevitable. Augustine interrogates Jewish scripture with a view toward answering what he sees as its limitations with Christian scripture and doctrine.

Educated in the Roman rhetorical tradition and having had complete familiarity with classical political and philosophic...

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Religious Thought of Augustine, Bishop of Hippo. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 10:02, August 08, 2020, from