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When the first edition of this scholarly study of the Confessions of St. Augustine appeared several decades ago, it received an enthusiastic reception and heralded a new era in Augustinian studies. Since then its reputation has grown and it is now accepted as a standard work which no one seriously interested in Augustine can afford to leave unread. Augustine's formative years, up to his conversion, present a formidable task for a biographer: his was a complex personality blending strong sensual, spiritual and intellectual traits. He was most certainly a child of his era, an age so difficult to understand and appreciate. Professor O'Meara with his vast knowledge of the man and his times, has presented a readable and balanced portrait of Augustine as a young man. His work gives us a clearer understanding of one of the towering figures in the history of Christendom.222 pp.