Augustine

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The name Augustine - pronounced with the stress on the second syllable, aw-GUS-tin, IPA: /ɔː ˈgʌst ɪn/ - may refer to either of two saints, as well as a forename borne by unsainted individuals.

  • Augustine of Hippo, i.e., Aurelius Augustinus (354-430 CE), bishop of Hippo Regius in North Africa, a prolific Latin writer and author of Confessions. This Augustine was the inspiration for the Rule of St Augustine, and thus of the Augustinian Orders.
  • Augustine of Canterbury (before 540-604 CE), a Roman monk who became the first Archbishop of Canterbury. He is sometimes called 'The Apostle of the English, as he was sent to lead a mission to the Kentish kingdom by Pope Gregory the Great in 597. The Gospels of Saint Augustine are still the Bible used at the enthronement of an Archbishop of Canterbury. This Bible is certainly contemporaneous with the Saint, and there is no evidence that it was not his own copy.


There is a common abbreviation in Roman Catholic circles - Austin. This is both spelled and pronounced like the (unrelated) brand name of a motor-car, i.e. with the first vowel like that in 'off' and 'cost', IPA: /ɒ/, or in marked RP accents like that in 'awse' and 'sore', /ɔː/. While some Austins derive their name from Augustine of Hippo, most English bearers of the name derive it from Augustine of Canterbury.
    • Augustines, as a noun, refers to certain monks and friars who follow the Rule (the way of living laid down for religious professionals) of Augustine of Hippo. See August - Augustan - Augustinian - Augustine for a little more detail.
      • Austin, sometimes spelled Austen, is also a surname. It has been borne, among others, by
        • the philosopher, J.L. Austin (1911-1960)
        • the manufacturer of motor-cars, Herbert Austin (1866-1941), created Baron Austin in 1936, and the company he founded in Longbridge, makers of such vehicles as the Austin Seven
        • the novelist Jane Austen (1775-1817)