Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 717
Augustine, bishop of Hippo Regius (North Africa) writes to Vincentius, a Donatist (Rogatist) bishop. He lectures him on the unicity of the baptism, mentioning incidentally that Vincentius was performing baptisms while still a presbyter. Augustine, Letter 93, AD 407/408.
Letter 93
47. [...] Si autem hoc dementissimum est uel sentire uel dicere, iam tuae prudentiae est considerare, quare post Iohannem Paulus apostolus baptizauerit. Si enim post aequalem, omnes post uos baptizare debetis; si post maiorem, debes et tu post Rogatum; si post minorem, debuit post te Rogatus, cum presbyter baptizasses. Si autem baptismus, qui nunc datur, ideo pariter ualet in eis, quibus datur, quamuis sint inparis meriti, per quos datur, quia Christi est, non eorum, a quibus ministratur, puto [...].
(ed. Goldbacher 1898: 489)
Letter 93
47. [...] But if it is absolutely insane either to think or to say this, Your Wisdom must consider why the apostle Paul baptized after John. For, if he baptized after an equal, you ought all to baptize after one another. If he baptized after someone greater, you also ought to baptize after Rogatus. If he baptized after someone less great, Rogatus ought to have baptized after you since you baptized as a presbyter. But if, though those by whom it is conferred are unequal in merit, the baptism that is now conferred has equal validity in those upon whom it is conferred, because it is the baptism of Christ, not of those who are its ministers [...].
(trans. R. Teske, slightly modified)


Rogatus was the head of the break-away Donatist group. He was succeeded by Vincentius.

Place of event:

  • Latin North Africa
  • Cartenna

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.


Religious grouping (other than Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian) - Donatist
Further ecclesiastical career - Bishop
Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
Ritual activity - Baptism and instructing catechumens
Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: S. Adamiak, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER717,