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E01932: Augustine of Hippo, preaches a sermon in Carthage (North Africa), in the Basilica Novarum, on the feast day of the *Scillitan Martyrs (martyrs in Carthage from Scillium, S00913). Sermon 37, written in Latin, 397/411.

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posted on 2016-10-17, 00:00 authored by robert
Augustine of Hippo, Sermon 37

[Sermo habitus in natale martirum Scilitanorum in Basilica Novarum ubi dicit mulierem fortem quis inuenit

'Sermon at the yearly feast of the Scillitan martyrs, preached in the Basilica Novarum, in which he says: "who will find a virtuous woman?"']

In ch. 1 Augustine comments upon Proverbs 31:10 ('who can find a virtuous wife?') and refers these words to the Church, which is the virtuous woman and the mother of the martyrs:

Dies est enim martyrum, et ideo magis laudanda est mater martyrum.

'This is the day of the martyrs, and so we should praise the mother of the martyrs'.

In what follows no martyrs are mentioned.

Text: Lambot 1961, 446-447. Summary and Translation: Robert Wiśniewski.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Scilitan martyrs, ob. 180 in Carthage (North Africa) : S00913

Saint Name in Source


Type of Evidence

Literary - Sermons/Homilies


  • 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


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

Carthage Carthage Carthago Karthago قرطاج‎ Qarṭāj Mçidfa Carthage

Major author/Major anonymous work

Augustine of Hippo

Cult activities - Liturgical Activity

  • Sermon/homily

Cult activities - Festivals

  • Saint’s feast


This sermon was preached in Carthage, its dating is uncertain (397 according to Lambot, p. 445; 411 according to Kunzelmann, 444).


The Basilica Novarum was a suburban basilica whose name, literally the 'Basilica of the new ones', almost certainly refers to the areae novae, or the 'new cemeteries'; see Ennabli 1997, 27.


Text: Lambot, , C., Sermones de vetere testamento (1-50) (Corpus Christianorum. Series Latina, 41; Turnhout: Brepols, 1961). Translation: Hill, E. ‪The Works of Saint Augustine: A Translation for the 21st Century, vol. III 2. Sermons 20-50 ‬(New York: New City Press, 1990). Dating: Kunzelmann, A., "Die Chronologie der sermones des hl. Augustinus," Miscellanea Agostiniana, vol. 2 (Rome: Tipografia Poliglotta Vaticana, 1931), 417-452. Basilica: Ennabli, L., Carthage. Une métropole chrétienne du IVe à la fin du VIIe siècle (Paris: Études d'Antiquités Africaines, 1997).

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity