Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 565
A presbyter plays a role in the conflict between the bishops of Hippo and Milevis concerning the ordination of the subdeacon Timotheus. Account of Augustine of Hippo, Letter 63, North Africa, AD 396/402.
Letter 63
2. [...] Obiurgando correximus primo ipsum, qui tibi non obtemperauit, ut inconsulto fratre Carcedonio ad tuam sanctitatem ante proficisceretur, unde origo huius nostrae tribulationis exorta est; deinde presbyterum et Verinum, per quos, ut ordinaretur, factum esse comperimus.
(ed. Goldbacher 1898: 227)
Letter 63
2. [...]  By reprimands we corrected Timotheus, first of all, because he did not obey you in that he set out to return to Your Holiness before having consulted Brother Carcedonius; this disobedience was the origin of our disturbance. Then we reprimanded the presbyter and Verinus who we found out were the causes for his being ordained.
(trans. R. Teske, slightly modified)


The date for the events described in Letters 62 and 63 can be put probably between AD 396, the beginning of Augustine's episcopate, and AD 402, the council of Milevis that probably referred to this case in one of its decisions [312]. Timotheus, the lector of the church of Subsana, in the diocese of Hippo, travelled to Milevis and swore to Severus, the bishop of Milevis, an oath that he would not accept ordination in other places. However, after his return to the diocese of Hippo he was ordained a subdeacon in the church of Subsana. He later returned to Milevis.
The text permits even the interpretation that he was ordained by a presbyter, who may be anonymous, or (as Mandouze wants) who may be identified with Carcedonius, mentioned in the previous sentence.

Place of event:

  • Latin North Africa
  • Hippo Regius
  • Subsana

About the source:

Author: Augustine of Hippo
Title: Letters, Epistulae
Origin: Hippo Regius (Latin North Africa)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
The letters of Augustine of Hippo cover a wide range of topics: Holy Scripture, dogma and liturgy, philosophy, religious practice and everyday life. They range from full-scale theological treatises to small notes asking someone for a favour. The preserved corpus includes 308 letters, 252 written by Augustine, 49 that others sent to him and seven exchanged between third parties. 29 letters have been discovered only in the 20th century and edited in 1981 by Johannes Divjak; they are distinguished by the asterisk (*) after their number.
The preserved letters of Augustine extend over the period from his stay at Cassiciacum in 386 to his death in Hippo in 430.
A. Goldbacher ed., S. Augustini Hipponiensis Episcopi Epistulae, Pars 2, Ep. 31-123, Corpus Scriptorum Ecclesiasticorum Latinorum 34/2,  Prague-Vienna-Leipzig 1898.
Saint Augustine, Letters 1-99, trans. R. Teske, New York 2001.


Ecclesiastical transfer
    Former ecclesiastical career - Lower clergy
    Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
    Ritual activity - Ordaining
    Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
    Equal prerogatives of presbyters and bishops
    Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: S. Adamiak, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER565,