By Ian Adams, R.W. Dyson

The publication is a finished creation to the research of politics, political strategies and concepts, the forms of political structures, the most political events and the center matters on the way to dominate politics within the twenty-first century.

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His mature intellectual position may be described as Christian Neoplatonism. Having in 384 accepted a position at Milan as a teacher of rhetoric, he came under the influence of prominent Christians in that city. After a long mental struggle, recounted in detail in his Confessions, he was baptised by St Ambrose on Holy Saturday, 387. He was ordained priest in 391, and in 396 became Bishop of Hippo (the modern Algerian town of Annaba), where he remained until his death. Augustine’s literary output was immense, but he is not a political ‘theorist’ in the ordinary sense.

As is His wont, God uses evil to bring forth good. For Augustine, then, the state is to be understood under three aspects. It is a result of sin, a means of limiting the material damage done by sin, and a disciplinary order. Augustine’s opinion of political activity as such is not high. At De civitate Dei 4:4 he relates with approval the anecdote (derived from Cicero) of the pirate arrested and brought before Alexander the Great. ’ the emperor demands. ’ In his lengthy critique of Cicero at De civitate Dei 2:21 and 19:21, Augustine argues that no earthly state can embody vera iustitia, true justice.

Most of his political doctrines emerge incidentally, during the theological and moral discussions of the Summa theologiae. His only exclusively political work is a longish fragment called De regimine principum: part of a much larger work which he abandoned in about 1267 and which was subsequently completed by his pupil Tolommeo of Lucca. The most obvious feature of St Thomas’s philosophy is the extent to which it is influenced by the ideas and thought-patterns of Aristotle. Largely thanks to the triumph of Neoplatonism as mediated through the writings of Augustine, Aristotle’s ethical and political writings were effectively unknown in the West from late antiquity to the end of the eleventh century.

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