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An Evaluation of Augustine’s De Bono Coniugali (On the Good of Marriage)
Being one of the most important representatives of the Patristic philosophy and Christianity, St. Augustine is also known as “the first theologian of marriage”. When abstinence from sexual intercourse, which became one of the most important elements of Christianity along with monasticism, is presented as an ideal, this makes marriage the opposite of an ideal and the lesser evil. However, marriage is a union planned by God upon creating the human being and is one of God’s commands. St. Augustine explains the good in the marriage itself in his work titled De Bono Coniugali based on this contradiction. St. Augustine’s aforementioned work constitutes our paper’s focus. Yet, the marriage practices in Roman law and culture, the marriage according to the pagan philosophy, and the marriage in accordance with Jesus and the New Testament will be discussed due to their probable contributions to the formation of the thoughts presented in the work. After giving the important information concerning the work, such as its purpose of it, St. Augustine’s arguments will be evaluated within the scope of his culture’s law, philosophical tradition, and religion.

Augustine, Church fathers, patristic philosophy, Christianity, De Bono Coniugali, marriage.

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