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E01109: Augustine of Hippo, in his City of God (22.8), tells how a blind woman in Aquae Tibilitanae (North Africa) was healed when she touched flowers which had been in contact with a reliquary containing relics of *Stephen (the First Martyr, S00030), transferred to this place by a bishop, in the early 420s. Written in Latin in Hippo Regius (North Africa), c. 426/427.

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posted on 2016-02-09, 00:00 authored by robert
Augustine of Hippo, City of God 22.8

Ad Aquas Tibilitanas episcopo adferente Praeiecto martyris gloriosissimi Stephani memoria ueniebat magnae multitudinis concursu et occursu. Ibi caeca mulier, ut ad episcopum portantem duceretur, orauit; flores, quos ferebat, dedit, recepit, oculis admouit - protinus uidit. Stupentibus qui aderant praeibat exultans, uiam carpens et uiae ducem ulterius non requirens.

'The relics (memoria) of the most glorious martyr Stephen, brought by bishop Praeiectus, arrived at the Waters of Tibilis (Aquae Tibilitanae), amongst a great concourse of people. There a blind woman entreated that she might be led to the bishop who was carrying the relics. She gave him the flowers she was carrying. On taking them back, applied them to her eyes, and immediately saw. Those who were present were astounded, while she, with every expression of joy, preceded them, pursuing her way without further need of a guide.'

Text: Dombart and Kalb 1955. Translation: Dods 1887.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Stephen, the First Martyr : S00030

Saint Name in Source


Type of Evidence

Literary - Other


  • Latin

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region

Latin North Africa

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Hippo Regius

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Hippo Regius Carthage Carthago Karthago قرطاج‎ Qarṭāj Mçidfa Carthage

Major author/Major anonymous work

Augustine of Hippo

Cult Activities - Miracles

Miracle after death Healing diseases and disabilities

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Women Ecclesiastics - bishops Crowds

Cult Activities - Relics

Unspecified relic Transfer/presence of relics from distant countries Transfer, translation and deposition of relics Touching and kissing relics Reliquary – institutionally owned

Cult Activities - Cult Related Objects



Augustine wrote Book 22 of the City of God in Hippo, c. 426/427. Chapters 8-9 enumerate a number of contemporary miracles, most of which took place in Hippo and other cities of North Africa, either at the relics of Stephen, the first martyr or those of *Gervasius and *Protasius, martyrs in Milan.


The transfer of relics, mentioned in this passage, took place shortly after their arrival to Africa. Around 420 these relics, most probably brought to Africa by Orosius, found their way also to Hippo Regius, Calama, and Uzalis.


Edition: Dombart, B., and Kalb, A., Augustinus, De civitate dei, 2 vols. (Corpus Christianorum Series Latina 47-48; Turnhout: Brepols, 1955). English translation: Dods, M., Augustine, The City of God (Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, First Series, vol. 2; Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1887). Further reading: Meyers, J., Les miracles de saint Etienne. Recherches sur le recueil pseudo-augustinien (BHL 7860-7861), avec édition critique, traduction et commentaire (Turnhout: Brepols, 2006).

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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