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Augustine: De Civitate Dei The City of God Book V$
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Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780856687983

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9780856687983.001.0001

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De Civitate Dei

De Civitate Dei

(p.15) De Civitate Dei (p.16)
Augustine: De Civitate Dei The City of God Book V
P.G. Walsh
Liverpool University Press

This chapter provides the text and translation for Book V of Augustine's The City of God, which begins with a discussion of fate that condemns the predictions of the astrologers, particularly their claim to foretell the future from the position of the stars. It looks at Augustine's ultimate purpose on rejecting the thesis that the expansion and continuing existence of the Roman empire are to be the mere process of impersonal fate. It also demonstrates how Augustine narrowed the issue of fate down to the destiny of individuals, in relation to which the claims of the astrologers can be more effectively refuted. The chapter analyzes the cult of astrology that had spread from Babylon to Alexandria in Hellenistic times, attracting increasing respect in the later empire. It elaborates Augustine's rejection of the doctrine root and branch of astrology due to his study of Cicero's De diuinatione and De fato.

Keywords:   Book V, Augustine, The City of God, astrologers, impersonal fate, astrology

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