The Confessions of Saint Augustine
The Confessions of Saint Augustine
St. Augustine

Table of Contents


Title Page

Book I

Chapter I Great art Thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised…

Chapter II And how shall I call upon my God, my God and Lord…

Chapter III Do the heaven and earth then contain Thee, since Thou fillest them? or dost Thou…

Chapter IV What art Thou then, my God? what, but the Lord God? For who is Lord…

Chapter V Oh! that I might repose on Thee! Oh! that Thou wouldest enter into my heart…

Chapter VI Yet suffer me to speak unto Thy mercy, me…

Chapter VII Hear, O God.…

Chapter VIII Passing hence from infancy, I came to boyhood, or rather it came to me…

Chapter IX O God my God, what miseries and mockeries did I now experience…

Chapter X And yet, I sinned herein, O Lord God, the Creator and Disposer of all things…

Chapter XI As a boy, then, I had already heard of an eternal life…

Chapter XII In boyhood itself, however so much less dreaded for me than youth…

Chapter XIII But why did I so much hate the Greek…

Chapter XIV Why then did I hate the Greek classics, which have the like tales? For Homer…

Chapter XV Hear, Lord, my prayer; let not my soul faint under Thy discipline…

Chapter XVI But woe is thee, thou torrent of human custom! Who shall stand against thee? how…

Chapter XVII Bear with me, my God, while I say somewhat of my wit…

Chapter XVIII But what marvel that I was thus carried away to vanities…

Book II

Chapter I I will now call to mind my past foulness…

Chapter II And what was it that I delighted in, but to love…

Chapter III For that year were my studies intermitted: whilst after my return from Madaura a neighbour…

Chapter IV Theft is punished by Thy law, O Lord, and the law written in the hearts…

Chapter V For there is an attractiveness in beautiful bodies, in gold and silver…

Chapter VI What then did wretched I so love in thee…

Chapter VII What shall I render unto the Lord, that, whilst my memory recalls these things…

Chapter VIII What fruit had I then wretched man! in those things…

Chapter IX What then was this feeling? For of a truth it was too foul…

Chapter X Who can disentangle that twisted and intricate knottiness? Foul is it…

Book III

Chapter I To Carthage I came, where there sang all around me in my ears a cauldron…

Chapter II Why is it, that man desires to be made sad…

Chapter III And Thy faithful mercy hovered over me afar.…

Chapter IV Among such as these, in that unsettled age of mine…

Chapter V I resolved then to bend my mind to the holy Scriptures…

Chapter VI Therefore I fell among men proudly doting, exceeding carnal and prating…

Chapter VII For other than this, that which really is I knew not…

Chapter VIII Can it at any time or place be unjust to love God with all his…

Chapter IX Amidst these offences of foulness and violence, and so many iniquities…

Chapter X These things I being ignorant of, scoffed at those Thy holy servants and prophets.…

Chapter XI And Thou sentest Thine hand from above, and drewest my soul out of that profound…

Chapter XII Thou gavest her meantime another answer, which I call to mind…

Book IV

Chapter I For this space of nine years from my nineteenth year to my eight-and-twentieth we lived…

Chapter II In those years I taught rhetoric, and, overcome by cupidity…

Chapter III Those impostors then, whom they style Mathematicians, I consulted without scruple…

Chapter IV In those years when I first began to teach rhetoric in my native town…

Chapter V And now, Lord, these things are passed by, and time hath assuaged my wound.…

Chapter VI But what speak I of these things? for now is no time to question…

Chapter VII O madness, which knowest not how to love men…

Chapter VIII Times lose no time; nor do they roll idly by…

Chapter IX This is it that is loved in friends; and so loved…

Chapter X Turn us, O God of Hosts, show us Thy countenance…

Chapter XI Be not foolish, O my soul, nor become deaf in the ear of thine heart…

Chapter XII If bodies please thee, praise God on occasion of them…

Chapter XIII These things I then knew not, and I loved these lower beauties…

Chapter XIV But what moved me, O Lord my God, to dedicate these books unto Hierius…

Chapter XV But I saw not yet, whereon this weighty matter turned in Thy wisdom…

Chapter XVI And what did it profit me, that scarce twenty years old…

Book V

Chapter I Accept the sacrifice of my confessions from the ministry of my tongue…

Chapter II Let the restless, the godless, depart and flee from Thee…

Chapter III I would lay open before my God that nine-and-twentieth year of mine age.…

Chapter IV Doth then, O Lord God of truth, whoso knoweth these things…

Chapter V But yet who bade that Manichaeus write on these things also…

Chapter VI And for almost all those nine years, wherein with unsettled mind I had been their…

Chapter VII For after it was clear that he was ignorant of those arts in which I…

Chapter VIII Thou didst deal with me, that I should be persuaded to go to Rome…

Chapter IX And lo, there was I received by the scourge of bodily sickness…

Chapter X Thou recoveredst me then of that sickness, and healedst the son of Thy handmaid…

Chapter XI Furthermore, what the Manichees had criticised in Thy Scriptures…

Chapter XII I began then diligently to practise that for which I came to Rome…

Chapter XIII When therefore they of Milan had sent to Rome to the prefect of the city…

Chapter XIV For though I took no pains to learn what he spake…

Book VI

Chapter I O Thou, my hope from my youth, where wert Thou to me…

Chapter II When then my mother had once, as she was wont in Afric…

Chapter III Nor did I yet groan in my prayers, that Thou wouldest help me…

Chapter IV Ignorant then how this Thy image should subsist, I should have knocked and proposed the…

Chapter V Being led, however, from this to prefer the Catholic doctrine…

Chapter VI-- I panted after honours, gains, marriage; and Thou deridedst me.…

Chapter VII These things we, who were living as friends together…

Chapter VIII He, not forsaking that secular course which his parents had charmed him to pursue…

Chapter IX But this was already being laid up in his memory to be a medicine hereafter.…

Chapter X Him then I had found at Rome, and he clave to me by a most…

Chapter XI And I, viewing and reviewing things, most wondered at the length of time from that…

Chapter XII Alypius indeed kept me from marrying; alleging that so could we by no means with…

Chapter XIII Continual effort was made to have me married.…

Chapter XIV And many of us friends conferring about, and detesting the turbulent turmoils of human life…

Chapter XV Meanwhile my sins were being multiplied, and my concubine being torn from my side as…

Chapter XVI To Thee be praise, glory to Thee, Fountain of mercies.…

Book VII

Chapter I Deceased was now that my evil and abominable youth…

Chapter II It was enough for me, Lord, to oppose to those deceived deceivers…

Chapter III But I also as yet, although I held and was firmly persuaded that Thou our…

Chapter IV For I was in such wise striving to find out the rest…

Chapter V And I sought "whence is evil," and sought in an evil way…

Chapter VI But this time also had I rejected the lying divinations and impious dotages of the…

Chapter VII Now then, O my Helper, hadst Thou loosed me from those fetters…

Chapter VIII But Thou, Lord, abidest for ever, yet not for ever art Thou angry with us…

Chapter IX And Thou, willing first to show me how Thou resistest the proud…

Chapter X And being thence admonished to return to myself, I entered even into my inward self…

Chapter XI And I viewed the other things below Thee, and perceived that they neither altogether are…

Chapter XII And it was manifested unto me, that those things be good which yet are corrupted…

Chapter XIII And to Thee is nothing whatsoever evil: yea, not only to Thee…

Chapter XIV There is no soundness in them, whom aught of Thy creation displeaseth…

Chapter XV And I looked back on other things; and I saw that they owed their being…

Chapter XVI And I perceived and found it nothing strange, that bread which is pleasant to a…

Chapter XVII And I wondered that I now loved Thee, and no phantasm for Thee.…

Chapter XVIII Then I sought a way of obtaining strength sufficient to enjoy Thee…

Chapter XIX But I thought otherwise; conceiving only of my Lord Christ as of a man of…

Chapter XX But having then read those books of the Platonists…

Chapter XXI Most eagerly then did I seize that venerable writing of Thy Spirit…

Book VIII

Chapter I O my God, let me, with thanksgiving, remember, and confess unto Thee Thy mercies on…

Chapter II To Simplicianus then I went, the father of Ambrose a Bishop now in receiving Thy…

Chapter III Good God! what takes place in man, that he should more rejoice at the salvation…

Chapter IV Up, Lord, and do; stir us up, and recall us…

Chapter V But when that man of Thine, Simplicianus, related to me this of Victorinus…

Chapter VI And how Thou didst deliver me out of the bonds of desire…

Chapter VII Such was the story of Pontitianus; but Thou, O Lord…

Chapter VIII Then in this great contention of my inward dwelling…

Chapter IX Whence is this monstrousness? and to what end? Let Thy mercy gleam that I may…

Chapter X Let them perish from Thy presence, O God, as perish vain talkers and seducers of…

Chapter XI Thus soul-sick was I, and tormented, accusing myself much more severely than my wont…

Chapter XII But when a deep consideration had from the secret bottom of my soul drawn together…

Book IX

Chapter I O Lord, I am Thy servant; I am Thy servant…

Chapter II And I resolved in Thy sight, not tumultuously to tear…

Chapter III Verecundus was worn down with care about this our blessedness…

Chapter IV Now was the day come wherein I was in deed to be freed of my…

Chapter V The vintage-vacation ended, I gave notice to the Milanese to provide their scholars with another…

Chapter VI Thence, when the time was come wherein I was to give in my name…

Chapter VII Not long had the Church of Milan begun to use this kind of consolation and…

Chapter VIII Thou that makest men to dwell of one mind in one house…

Chapter IX Brought up thus modestly and soberly, and made subject rather by Thee to her parents…

Chapter X The day now approaching whereon she was to depart this life which day Thou well…

Chapter XI What answer I made her unto these things, I remember not.…

Chapter XII I closed her eyes; and there flowed withal a mighty sorrow into my heart…

Chapter XIII But now, with a heart cured of that wound…

Book X

Chapter I Let me know Thee, O Lord, who knowest me…

Chapter II And from Thee, O Lord, unto whose eyes the abyss of man's conscience is naked…

Chapter III What then have I to do with men, that they should hear my confessions --…

Chapter IV But for what fruit would they hear this? Do they desire to joy with me…

Chapter V For Thou, Lord, dost judge me: because, although no man knoweth the things of a…

Chapter VI Not with doubting, but with assured consciousness, do I love Thee…

Chapter VII What then do I love, when I love my God? who is He above the…

Chapter VIII I will pass then beyond this power of my nature also…

Chapter IX Yet not these alone does the unmeasurable capacity of my memory retain.…

Chapter X But now when I hear that there be three kinds of questions…

Chapter XI Wherefore we find, that to learn these things whereof we imbibe nor the images by…

Chapter XII The memory containeth also reasons and laws innumerable of numbers and dimensions…

Chapter XIII All these things I remember, and how I learnt them I remember.…

Chapter XIV The same memory contains also the affections of my mind…

Chapter XV But whether by images or no, who can readily say? Thus…

Chapter XVI What, when I name forgetfulness, and withal recognise what I name? whence should I recognise…

Chapter XVII Great is the power of memory, a fearful thing…

Chapter XVIII For the woman that had lost her groat, and sought it with a light…

Chapter XIX But what when the memory itself loses any thing…

Chapter XX How then do I seek Thee, O Lord? For when I seek Thee…

Chapter XXi But is it so, as one remembers Carthage who hath seen it? No.…

Chapter XXII Far be it, Lord, far be it from the heart of Thy servant who here…

Chapter XXIII It is not certain then that all wish to be happy…

Chapter XXIV See what a space I have gone over in my memory seeking Thee…

Chapter XXV But where in my memory residest Thou, O Lord…

Chapter XXVI Where then did I find Thee, that I might learn Thee? For in my memory…

Chapter XXVII Too late loved I Thee, O Thou Beauty of ancient days…

Chapter XXVIII When I shall with my whole self cleave to Thee…

Chapter XXIX And all my hope is no where but in Thy exceeding great mercy.…

Chapter XXX Verily Thou enjoinest me continency from the lust of the flesh…

Chapter XXXI There is another evil of the day, which I would were sufficient for it.…

Chapter XXXII With the allurements of smells, I am not much concerned.…

Chapter XXXIII The delights of the ear had more firmly entangled and subdued me…

Chapter XXXIV There remains the pleasure of these eyes of my flesh…

Chapter XXXV To this is added another form of temptation more manifoldly dangerous.…

Chapter XXXVI And Thou knowest how far Thou hast already changed me…

Chapter XXXVII By these temptations we are assailed daily, O Lord…

Chapter XXXVIII Yet the word which cometh out of the mouth…

Chapter XXXIX Within also, within is another evil, arising out of a like temptation…

Chapter XL Where hast Thou not walked with me, O Truth…

Chapter XLI Thus then have I considered the sicknesses of my sins in that threefold concupiscence…

Chapter XLII Whom could I find to reconcile me to Thee? was I to have recourse to…

Chapter XLIII But the TRUE Mediator, Whom in Thy secret mercy Thou hast showed to the humble…

Book XI

Chapter I Lord, since eternity is Thine, art Thou ignorant of what I say to Thee? or…

Chapter II But how shall I suffice with the tongue of my pen to utter all Thy…

Chapter III I would hear and understand, how "In the Beginning Thou madest the heaven and earth.…

Chapter IV Behold, the heavens and the earth are; they proclaim that they were created…

Chapter V But how didst Thou make the heaven and the earth? and what the engine of…

Chapter VI But how didst Thou speak? In the way that the voice came out of the…

Chapter VII Thou callest us then to understand the Word, God…

Chapter VIII Why, I beseech Thee, O Lord my God? I see it in a way…

Chapter IX In this Beginning, O God, hast Thou made heaven and earth…

Chapter X Lo, are they not full of their old leaven…

Chapter XI Who speak thus, do not yet understand Thee, O Wisdom of God…

Chapter XII See, I answer him that asketh, "What did God before He made heaven and earth?"…

Chapter XIII But if any excursive brain rove over the images of forepassed times…

Chapter XIV At no time then hadst Thou not made any thing…

Chapter XV And yet we say, "a long time" and "a short time"…

Chapter XVI And yet, Lord, we perceive intervals of times, and compare them…

Chapter XVII I ask, Father, I affirm not: O my God…

Chapter XVIII Permit me, Lord, to seek further.…

Chapter XIX Thou then, Ruler of Thy creation, by what way dost Thou teach souls things to…

Chapter XX What now is clear and plain is, that neither things to come nor past are.…

Chapter XXI I said then even now, we measure times as they pass…

Chapter XXII My soul is on fire to know this most intricate enigma.…

Chapter XXIII I heard once from a learned man, that the motions of the sun…

Chapter XXIV Dost Thou bid me assent, if any define time to be "motion of a body?"…

Chapter XXV And I confess to Thee, O Lord, that I yet know not what time is…

Chapter XXVI Does not my soul most truly confess unto Thee…

Chapter XXVII Courage, my mind, and press on mightily.…

Chapter XXVIII But how is that future diminished or consumed, which as yet is not? or how…

Chapter XXIX But because Thy loving-kindness is better than all lives…

Chapter XXX And now will I stand, and become firm in Thee…

Chapter XXXI O Lord my God, what a depth is that recess of Thy mysteries…

Book XII

Chapter I My heart, O Lord, touched with the words of Thy Holy Scripture…

Chapter II The lowliness of my tongue confesseth unto Thy Highness…

Chapter III And now this earth was invisible and without form…

Chapter IV How then should it be called, that it might be in some measure conveyed to…

Chapter V So that when thought seeketh what the sense may conceive under this…

Chapter VI But I, Lord, if I would, by my tongue and my pen…

Chapter VII But whence had it this degree of being, but from Thee…

Chapter VIII But that heaven of heavens was for Thyself, O Lord…

Chapter IX And therefore the Spirit, the Teacher of Thy servant…

Chapter X O let the Light, the Truth, the Light of my heart…

Chapter Xi Already Thou hast told me with a strong voice…

Chapter XII These things considered, as much as Thou givest, O my God…

Chapter XIII This then is what I conceive, O my God…

Chapter XIV Wondrous depth of Thy words! whose surface, behold! is before us…

Chapter XV "Will you affirm that to be false, which with a strong voice Truth tells me…

Chapter XVI With these I now parley a little in Thy presence…

Chapter XVII For they say, "Though these things be true, yet did not Moses intend those two…

Chapter XVIII All which things being heard and well considered, I will not strive about words…

Chapter XIX For TRUE it is, O Lord, that Thou madest heaven and earth…

Chapter XX Out of these truths, of which they doubt not whose inward eye Thou hast enabled…

Chapter XXI And with regard to the understanding of the words following…

Chapter XXII For should any attempt to dispute against these two last opinions…

Chapter XXIII These things then being heard and perceived, according to the weakness of my capacity which…

Chapter XXIV But which of us shall, among those so many truths…

Chapter XXV Let no man harass me then, by saying, Moses thought not as you say…

Chapter XXVI And yet I, O my God, Thou lifter up of my humility…

Chapter XXVII For as a fountain within a narrow compass, is more plentiful…

Chapter XXVIII But others, unto whom these words are no longer a nest…

Chapter XXIX But he that no otherwise understands In the Beginning He made…

Chapter XXX In this diversity of the TRUE opinions, let Truth herself produce concord.…

Chapter XXXI So when one says, "Moses meant as I do"…

Chapter XXXII Lastly, O Lord, who art God and not flesh and blood…

Book XIII

Chapter I I call upon Thee, O my God, my mercy…

Chapter II For of the fulness of Thy goodness, doth Thy creature subsist…

Chapter III That which Thou saidst in the beginning of the creation…

Chapter IV What then could he wanting unto Thy good, which Thou Thyself art…

Chapter V Lo, now the Trinity appears unto me in a glass darkly…

Chapter VI But what was the cause, O true-speaking Light? -- unto Thee lift I up my…

Chapter VII Hence let him that is able, follow with his understanding Thy Apostle…

Chapter VIII Angels fell away, man's soul fell away, and thereby pointed the abyss in that dark…

Chapter IX But was not either the Father, or the Son…

Chapter X Blessed creature, which being itself other than Thou, has known no other condition…

Chapter XI Which of us comprehendeth the Almighty Trinity? and yet which speaks not of It…

Chapter XII Proceed in thy confession, say to the Lord thy God…

Chapter XIII But as yet by faith and not by sight…

Chapter XIV Behold, I too say, O my God, Where art Thou? see…

Chapter XV Or who, except Thou, our God, made for us that firmament of authority over us…

Chapter XVI For altogether, as Thou art, Thou only knowest; Who art unchangeably…

Chapter XVII Who gathered the embittered together into one society? For they have all one end…

Chapter XVIII So, Lord, so, I beseech Thee, let there spring up…

Chapter XIX But first, wash you, be clean; put away evil from your souls…

Chapter XX Let the sea also conceive and bring forth your works…

Chapter XXI And hereby, in Thy Word, not the deepness of the sea…

Chapter XXII For behold, O Lord, our God, our Creator, when our affections have been restrained from…

Chapter XXIII But that he judgeth all things, this answers to his having dominion over the fish…

Chapter XXIV But what is this, and what kind of mystery? Behold…

Chapter XXV I would also say, O Lord my God, what the following Scripture minds me of…

Chapter XXVI But they are fed by these fruits, that are delighted with them…

Chapter XXVII I will then speak what is TRUE in Thy sight…

Chapter XXVIII And Thou, O God, sawest every thing that Thou hadst made…

Chapter XXIX And I looked narrowly to find, whether seven, or eight times Thou sawest that Thy…

Chapter XXX And I heard, O Lord my God, and drank up a drop of sweetness out…

Chapter XXXI But they who by Thy Spirit see these things…

Chapter XXXII Thanks to Thee, O Lord.…

Chapter XXXIII Let Thy works praise Thee, that we may love Thee…

Chapter XXXIV We have also examined what Thou willedst to be shadowed forth…

Chapter XXXV O Lord God, give peace unto us: for Thou hast given us all things…

Chapter XXXVI But the seventh day hath no evening, nor hath it setting…

Chapter XXXVII For then shalt Thou rest in us, as now Thou workest in us…

Chapter XXXVIII We therefore see these things which Thou madest, because they are…




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