In all complete editions of the works of Jerome, beginning from the 1468 princeps through that of Erasmus, an anonymous text, later than Jerome, is included, entitled Dialogus sub nomine Hieronymi et Augustini de origine animarum. The author lived in S Italy ca. the mid 5th c., perhaps a monk who fled Africa at the time of Genseric. Since the author shows sympathy for Jerome’s thesis on the soul’s creation directly by God and against Augustinian spiritual traducianism, the Dialogus was inserted among his works. The author knows well the whole preceding discussion and the theological thought of the two Fathers, from whom he extracts the passages of the dialogue with a refined compilational technique, perfectly succeeding in presenting and maintaining the positions of the two protagonists. Augustine, based on his discussion of original sin and the baptism of babies, seems more expert in the theological discussion, but Jerome wins. The author reinforces the creationist thesis with biblical citations, esp. from the Gospel of John: My Father works always, and so do I Jn 5:17. There is another brief, later treatise on the same theme, Altercatio Ambrosii contra eos qui animam non confitentur CPL 170.

CPL 633 Ep. 37 of Jerome; CPPM II, A n. 886; PL 30, 261-271 in the 1846 ed., PL 30, 270-280 ed. 1865. Text and It. tr.: I. Tolomio, L’anima dell’uomo. Trattati sull’anima dal V al IX secolo, Milan 1979, 110-134 with bibl.; P. Courcelle, Littrature latine d’poque patristique, in Actes du premier Congr¨s de la Fd. Intern. des Ass. d’tudes classiques, Paris 1951, 287-307 Altercatio 289; I. Tolomio, L’origine dell’anima nell’Alto Medioevo: Medioevo 13 1987 51-73 Dialogus 60-62; Altercatio 62.


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