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E04399: Augustine of Hippo preaches in Latin a sermon on the feast of the Ascenion, which on which also the feast of the deposition of *Leontius (bishop of Hippo, S01685) was celebrated in this city. Sermon 362, delivered in Hippo (North Africa), possibly either in 411 or 422.

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posted on 2017-11-21, 00:00 authored by robert
Augustine of Hippo, Sermon 262.2-3

[In die ascensionis Domini. Habitus in basilica Leontiana.

'On the day of the ascension of the Lord. Preached in the basilica Laontiana']

Hodiernum ergo diem ascensionis ipsius celebramus. Occurrit autem huic ecclesiae alia uernacula solemnitas. Conditoris basilicae huius sancti Leontii hodie depositio est. Sed dignetur obscurari stella a sole.

'Thus we are celebrating today the day of his Ascension. In this church, however, other, local solemnity falls. It is the day of the interment of the holy Leontius, the builder of this basilica. It is proper, however, that the star be sun.'

In what follows Augustine does not refer anymore to Leontius or his feast.

Text: Patrologia Latina 38, 208. Translation and summary: Robert Wiśniewski.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Leontius, bishop of Hippo, ob. 4th c.? : S01685

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

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 - Liturgical Activity

  • Eucharist associated with cult

Cult activities - Festivals

  • Saint’s feast

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - bishops


Hill 1993, 218, tentatively dates the feast of Leontius on 4 May. This dating is based on Letter 29 (E01837), in which Augustine refers to a sermon on the feast of St Leontius which he preached forty days after Easter. Since this letter was written most probably in 395 and on that year Easter fell on 25 March, the feast of St Leontius would have been celebrated on 4 May. If so, the present sermon would have to be preached either in 411 or in 422, since only then the feast of the Ascension fell on 4 May. This reasoning, however, is highly insecure.


Leontius is identified as a bishop of Hippo only in Augustine's Letter 29 (E01837). He is not mentioned in other sources.


Text: Migne, J.P., Patrologia Latina 38 (Paris, 1865). Translation: Hill, E., The Works of Saint Augustine: A Translation for the 21st Century, vol. III 7. Sermons 230-372B on the Liturgical Seasons ‬(New York: New City Press, 1993).

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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