Augustine was born at Thagaste on November 13, 354. Thagaste was a small free city of proconsula Numida in North Africa. In those days, North Africa was a part of the Roman Empire. His family had been Roman, from a legal standpoint, for at least a century when he was born. His father, Patricius, one of members of the town council, was not a Christian. But, his mother, Monica, was a devout Christian. She brought her husband the grace of baptism and of a holy death when Augustine was a 17 years old.
Augustine’s family had been Roman, from a legal standpoint, for at least a century when he was born. His first language was Latin. When he was 11 years old, he was sent to school at Madaurus, a small Numidian city. He became familiar with Latin literature. His parents were so committed to protecting him from difficulties in both the practical and the spiritual sides of life. Monica wanted her son to embrace the Christian Faith. She was determined to keep him from being led astray by philosophers. Patricius was equally determined that Augustine would never have to endure the economic. Augustine would have been a very different person.
Augustine’s younger days, he loved games and was fond of the sports of his contemporaries. One of his favorites was catching birds, and he especially enjoyed the song of the nightingales in the woods around Thagaste. He used to tell lies, especially to his teachers. He had a fund of stories which he told extremely well. He was a prodigious conversationalist and a charmer of men.
Augustine received a Christian education. When he was of age, young Augustine went to the local grammar school. He considered such treatment unfair since he did not see why he should have to learn Greek and mathematics. When he went to school at Madaurus, His fist insight into the nature of sin occurred when he and a number of friends stole fruit they did not even want from a neighborhood garden. The pagan Madaurians had developed such a cult of devotion to Appulius that they believed him to be even greater than Christ. When Madaurus had nothing more to contribute to his education, Augustine returned home. He began to think of sensual affairs and to crave for carnal pleasures even before he was sixteen. Impure thoughts surged within him. His parents were not quite unaware of the sinful leanings of their son.
Augustine should consider prayer a solution to his problem was natural enough. His Christian mother must have taught him a simple understanding of the faith. Monica chose to enroll him as a catechumen, one who was learning Christianity and who aspired to Christian baptism.
Young Augustine made a daring entry into the city life. He went to Carthage to continue his education in rhetoric. Although raised as a Christian, Augustine left the church to follow the Manichaean religion, much to the despair of his mother, Monica. Augustine began an affair with a young woman in Carthage. Possibly because Monica wanted him to marry a person of his class, the woman remained his lover for over thirteen years and gives birth to his son Adeodatus.
Augustine taught grammar at Thagaste in 373. The following year he moved to Carthage to conduct a school of rhetoric, and would