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If I give you a rose  you will not disdain its creator.  (Adversus Marcionem I, 4, 4)



Here are a few quotations, more or less frequently quoted, and usually misquoted as the original context tends to make clear. Quoting an author like Tertullian, so prone to paradox, irony and biting wit, can be a hazardous business, made worse by Tertullian's inability to resist a good phrase.  Augustine remarks of some of his phrases, "this is said with more spirit than truth" 1; and this has given opportunities to the malicious that they have not been slow to take.  However if you can enjoy a nice turn of phrase, Tertullian has many to offer.

I don't know the source of every quotation - if you do, please let me know.  Contributions are welcome!


"Vide", inquiunt, "ut invicem se diligant" - ipsi enim invicem oderunt - "et ut pro alteruto mori sint parati"; ipsi enim ad occidendum alterutrum paratiores erunt.

"Look," they say, "how they love one another" (for they themselves hate one another); "and how they are ready to die for each other" (for they themselves are readier to kill each other).

Usually quoted as 'See how [these Christians] love one another.'

Text is CSEL 69; translation is Glover, Loeb edition.

Apologeticum ch. 39, 7
2 Semen est sanguis Christianorum.

The blood of the martyrs is the seed [of the Church].

Text is CSEL 69; translation is common, but checked against Glover, Loeb edition.

Apologeticum ch. 50, 13
3 Quippe res dei ratio quia deus omnium conditor nihil non ratione providit disposuit ordinavit, nihil [enim] non ratione tractari intellegique voluit.

For reason is a property of God's, since there is nothing which God, the creator of all things, has not foreseen, arranged and determined by reason; moreover, there is nothing He does not wish to be investigated and understood by reason.  

Text is CCL I, p.321. Translation is ACW 28. See note on p.137: There are 340 passages in Tertullian where the word ratio appears, making it one of the most frequently used nouns in his work.

De paenitentia ch. 1, 2
4 Certum est, quia impossibile - It is certain because it is impossible.

A fuller quotation:

Crucifixus est dei filius; non pudet, quia pudendum est.
Et mortuus est dei filius; credibile prorsus est, quia ineptum est.
Et sepultus resurrexit; certum est, quia impossibile.

The Son of God was crucified: I am not ashamed--because it is shameful.
The Son of God died: it is immediately credible--because it is silly. 
He was buried, and rose again: it is certain--because it is impossible.

(prorsus is not in the Codex Agobardinus or Codex Trecensis (the best mss), but is in the other MSS (the Corpus Cluniacense))

Translation is Evans.

NB: This is usually misquoted, "Credo quia impossibile" (I believe it because it is impossible), and used together with the Athens/Jerusalem quote as evidence of Tertullian's irrationalism, and advocacy of blind faith as a reason to believe.  But neither idea is under discussion.  The context is actually an argument with the heretic Marcion, who believed in the resurrection, but didn't believe Christ had a real body, and that the flesh was shameful.  Tertullian points out that Christ himself said that worldly wisdom was not to be trusted on such things, so if Marcion was following it, he must be in the wrong.  The idea of irrationalism as such, as opposed to 'the wisdom of the world is foolishness' does not arise.   See also Sider, R.D., Credo quia absurdum?, Classical World, 73, 1980, pp.417-9 (reviewed CTC 80, §45) briefly discusses both 'quotes' and puts them in context, with an interesting suggestion that Tertullian was here using Aristotle.

De carne Christi ch. 5, 4.
5 "Qui fugiebat rursus [sibi] proeliabitur." Vt et rursus forsitan fugiat! - "He who flees will fight again".  Yes, and perhaps flee again too!

Text is CCL II, p.1147.

De fuga in persecutione ch. 10, 1
6 Quid ergo Athenis et Hierosolymis - What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?

NB: Context is that importing secular ideas into Christ's teaching is mixing chalk and cheese together.  See also the note on #3, Certum est, quia impossibile est.

De praescriptione haereticorum ch. 7, 9.

Nobis vero semel homicidio interdicto etiam conceptum utero, dum adhuc sanguis in hominem delib[er]atur, dissolvere non licet.  Homicidii festinatio est prohibere nasci; nec refert, natam quis eripiat animam an nascentem disturbet.  Homo est et qui est futurus; etiam fructus omnis iam in semine est.

Indeed for us murder is forbidden once and for all, so it is not permitted even to destroy what is conceived in the womb. To prohibit the birth of a child is only a faster way to murder; it makes little difference whether one destroys a life already born or prevents it from coming to birth. It is a human being, who is to be a human being, for the whole fruit is already present in the seed.

Text is CSEL 69; translation is based on Glover, Loeb edition, but made slightly more literal (by me).  Infanticide (particularly of baby girls, whether by drowning or exposure 'to cold, starvation and the dogs') and abortion were both legal and usual in antiquity.  Glover quotes (p.49) the papyrus letter of Hilarion to Alis (AD 1); "If it was a girl, put it out."

Apologeticum ch. 9, 8

Rosam tibi si obtulero, non fastidies creatorem. -   If I give you a rose you will not disdain its creator.

Text is CCL I, p.456.

Adversus Marcionem Book I, ch. 14, verse 4
9 He who lives only to benefit himself confers on the world a benefit when he dies. Unknown, but quoted by Jung.
10 Tu es ianua diaboli - You are the doorway of the devil

NB:  Talking about woman, and notorious in feminist literature, following Simone de Beauvoir in Le deuxième sexe. Church, F. Forester, Sex and Salvation in Tertullian, Harvard Theological Review, 68, 1976, pp.83-101, (reviewed in CTC 76, §26) assesses this issue rather less polemically. (Not checked). Marie Turcan reviews the whole subject, Être femme selon Tertullien, Vita Latina 119 (September 1990), pp.15-21 (reviewed CTC 90, §51).  Also in

De cultu feminarum I, 1
11 Male enim velle, male facere, male dicere, male cogitare de quoquam ex aequo vetamur.  Quodcumque non licet in imperatorem, id nec in quemquam;

We are equally forbidden to wish ill, to do ill, to speak ill, to think ill of all men. The thing we must not do to an emperor, we must not do to any one else.

Text is CSEL 69; translation is ANF.

Apologeticum ch. 36, 4
12 nemo alii nascitur moriturus sibi.

No-one is born for another, being destined to die for himself.

Text is CCL II (online).

De Pallio 5, 4
13 Plane nihil deo difficile: sed si tam abrupte in praesumptionibus nostris hac sententia utamur, quidvis de deo confingere poterimus quasi fecerit, quia facere potuerit.

Certainly nothing is difficult for God: but if in our assumptions we so rashly make use of this judgement, we shall
be able to invent any manner of thing concerning God, as that he has done it, on the ground that he was able to do it.

Text is Evans(online); translation is Evans(online).

Adversus Praxean ch. 10, 8
14 2. Sed et retro oratio plagas irrogabat, fundebat hostium exercitus, imbrium utilia prohibebat.  Nunc vero oratio iustitiae omnem iram Dei avertit, pro inimicis excubat, pro persequentibus supplicat.  Mirum si aquas caelestes extorquere novit, quae potuit et ignes impetrare?  Sola est oratio quae Deum vincit; sed Christus eam nihil mali voluit operarai, omnem illi virtutem de bono contulit.

2.  In the past prayer was able to bring down punishment, rout armies, withhold the blessing of rain. Now, however, the prayer of the just turns aside the whole anger of God, keeps vigil for its enemies, pleads for persecutors. Is it any wonder that it can call down water from heaven when it could obtain fire from heaven as well? Prayer is the one thing that can conquer God. But Christ has willed that it should work no evil, and has given it all power over good.

Text is CCSL I, p.274 (ed. Diercks); translation is from the net, one of many translations from the Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours, rather than ANF, Souter or Evans, all of which I've checked.

De Oratione ch. 29, 2
15 Exigo rationem bonitas, quia nec aliud quid bonum haberi liceat quod non rationaliter bonum sit, nedum ut ipsa bonitas irrationalis deprehendatur.  [2] Facilius malum cui rationis aliquid affuerit pro bono habebitur quam ut bonum ratione desertum non pro malo iudicetur.

I demand reason in his [Marcion's god] goodness, because nothing ought to be accounted good which is not rationally good: far less should goodness itself be found irrational.  It will be easier for evil, vouched for by some manner of reason, to be mistaken for good, than for good abandoned by reason to escape condemnation as evil.

Text and translation is Evans, vol I, p.61.

Adversus Marcionem I, 23, 1-2.
16 [2] Nec ratio enim sine bonitate ratio est, nec bonitas sine ratione bonitas ...

Reason without goodness is not reason, and goodness without reason is not goodness.

Text and translation is Evans, vol I, p.101.

Adversus Marcionem II, 6, 2.
17 Non reprobas autem deum iudicem, qui non iudicem deum probas: ipsam sine dubio iustitiam accusare debebis, quae iudicem praestat, aut et eam in species malitiae deputare, id est iniustitiam in titulos bonitatis adscribere.  [4] Nunc enim iustitia malum, si iniustitia bonum.

When you express approval of a god who is no judge, it is not the God who is a judge whom you express disapproval of: you will be forced, no question of it, to lay accusation against justice itself - for this it is that causes any man to be a judge - classing it as one of the varieties of evil: which means you will have to include injustice among the subheadings of goodness.  Justice is an evil thing only if injustice is a good one.

Text and translation is Evans, vol I, p.121.

Adversus Marcionem II, 11, 3-4.
18 Nihil enim bonum quod iniustum, bonum autem omne quod iustum.

Nothing that is unjust can be good, and everything that is just is bound to be good.

Text and translation is Evans, vol I, p.121.

Adversus Marcionem II, 11, 4.
19 Sed veritas Christiana destricte pronuntiavit, Deus si non unus est, non est.

But Christian truth has decisively asserted that if God is not one only, he does not exist.

Text and translation is Evans, vol I, p.9.

Adversus Marcionem I, 3, 1.
20 Semper humana gens male de deo meruit, primo quidem ut inofficiosa eius, quem cum intellegeret ex parte, non requisivit, sed et alios insuper sibi commentata, quos coleret; dehinc quod non inquirendo innocentiae magistrum et nocentiae iudicem et exactorem omnibus vitiis et criminibus inolevit.

The truth is, the human race has always deserved ill at God's hand. First of all, as undutiful to Him, because when it knew Him in part, it not only did not seek after Him, but even invented other gods of its own to worship; and further, because, as the result of their willing ignorance of the Teacher of righteousness, the Judge and Avenger of sin, all vices and crimes grew and flourished.

Text is Becker, translation is ANF.

Apologeticum 40, 10
21 [4] Deus ubique et bonitas dei ubique, daemonium ubique et maledictio daemonii ubique, iudicii  diuini inuocatio ubique, mors ubique et conscientia mortis ubique, et testimonium ubique. (CSEL 20)

[4]  God is everywhere, and the goodness of God is everywhere; demons are everywhere, and the cursing of them is everywhere; the invocation of divine judgment is everywhere, death is everywhere, and the sense of death is everywhere, and all the world over is found the witness of the soul. (Thelwall, ANF)

De Testimonio Animae, 6, 4.
22 Nothing else can properly be accounted good than that which is rationally good; much less can goodness itself be detected in any irrationality. More easily will an evil thing which has something rational belonging to it be accounted good, than that a good thing bereft of all reasonable quality should escape being regarded as evil.  (Holmes, ANF). Adversus Marcionem I, 23, 1.
23 That is tacitly permitted which is forbidden without any infliction of vengeance. (Holmes, ANF). Adversus Marcionem I, 26, 3.
24 Power will not be feared, unless it is just and regular, although it may possibly be loved even when corrupt: for it is by allurement that it stands, not by authority; by flattery, not by proper influence. And what can be more direct flattery than not to punish sins? (Holmes, ANF). Adversus Marcionem I, 27, 4.
25 How beautiful, then, the marriage of two Christians, two who are one in hope, one in desire, one in the way of life they follow, one in the religion they practice. They are as brother and sister, both servants of the same Master. Nothing divides them, either in flesh or in spirit. They are, in very truth, two in one flesh; and where there is but one flesh there is also but one spirit. They pray together, they worship together, they fast together; instructing one another, encouraging one another, strengthening one another. Side by side they visit God's church and partake of God's Banquet; side by side they face difficulties and persecution, share their consolations. They have no secrets from one another; they never shun each other's company; they never bring sorrow to each other's hearts. 

Translation is Ancient Christian Writers 13, p.35.

Ad Uxorem II, 8, 7.
26 Congressionis lusionem deputa, lector, ante pugnam; ostendam, sed non imprimam vulnera. Si et ridebatur alicubi, materiis ipsis satisfiet. Multa sic digna sunt revinci, ne gravitate adoneretur. Vanitati proprie festivitas cedit. Congruit et veritati ridere, quia laetans de aemulis suis ludere [quia] secura est. Curandum plane, e risus eius rideatur, si fuerit indignus; ceterum ubicumque dignus risus, officium est.

Ce que j'ai fait n'est qu'un jeu avant un véritable combat. J'ai plutôt montré les blessures qu'on vous peut faire que je ne vous en ai fait. Que s'il se trouve des endroits où l'on soit excité à rire, c'est parce que les sujets mêmes y portaient. Il y a beaucoup de choses qui méritent d'être moquées et jouées de la sorte, de peur de leur donner du poids en les combattant sérieusement. Rien n'est plus dû à la vanité que la risée; et c'est proprement à la vérité à qui il appartient de rire, parce qu'elle est gaie, et de se jouer de ses ennemis, parce qu'elle est assurée de la victoire. Il est vrai qu'il faut prendre garde que les railleries ne soient pas basses et indignes de la vérité. Mais, à cela près, quand on pourra s'en servir avec adresse, c'est un devoir que d'en user. ...  ce serait les autoriser que de les traiter sérieusement.

"What I have now done is only a little sport before the real combat. I have rather indicated the wounds that might be given you than inflicted any. If the reader has met with passages which have excited his risibility, he must ascribe this to the subjects themselves. There are many things which deserve to be held up in this way to ridicule and mockery, lest, by a serious refutation, we should attach a weight to them which they do not deserve. Nothing is more due to vanity than laughter; and it is the Truth properly that has a right to laugh, because she is cheerful, and to make sport of her enemies, because she is sure of the victory. Care must be taken, indeed, that the raillery is not too low, and unworthy of the truth; but, keeping this in view, when ridicule may be employed with effect, it is a duty to avail ourselves of it." ... "To treat them seriously would be to sanction them."

Quoted by Blaise PASCAL, "Lettres à un Provincial" (Provincial Letters) XI; English version translated by Thomas M'Crie. (Both found online)

Adversus Valentinianos 6,2 (CCL, p. 757; V 183, lines 7f)
27 What is belief in the resurrection, unless believing it entire? For if the flesh is to be restored from dissolution, much more will it be recalled from discomfort. Greater things prescribe the rule for the lesser. Is not the amputation  or the crippling of any member the death of that member? If general death is rescinded by resurrection, what of partial death? If we are changed into glory, how much more into health. The defects that accrue to bodies are an accident: their integrity is a property. In the latter we are born. Even if we are crippled in the womb, this happens to one who is already man: the species is there before the accident. As life is given us by God, so also is it given again: as we were when we received it, so are we also when we receive it back. Our restoration is a gift to nature, not to injury: we live again as what we are born, not as what damage makes us.

Translation is Evans, 1960.

De Resurrectione Carnis, c. 57.
28 Omne enim spectaculum sine concussione spiritus non est. 

There is no public entertainment which does not inflict spiritual damage. 

Text is Weeber, 1988. This English version is of unknown source (but found online).  From the other translations:
For the show always leads to spiritual agitation, ... (Thelwall's version, 1869)
There is no public spectacle without violence to the spirit. (Glover's version, 1931)
There is no spectacle without violent agitation of the soul. (Arbesmann's version, 1959).

De Spectaculis 15, 3.
29 Sat refert inter honorem temporis et religionem. Det consuetudo fidem tempori, natura deo.

There is a wide enough difference between the honour due to time, and religion. Let Custom show fidelity to Time, Nature to God.

Text is Gerlo, translation is Thelwall.

De Pallio 4, 2.
30 Denique si quid mare diluit, caelum deussit, terra subduxit, gladius detotondit, alias uersura compensati redit.

Whatever the sea has washed away, the heaven burned down, the earth undermined, the sword shorn down, reappears at some other time by the turn of compensation.

Text is Gerlo, translation is Thelwall.

De Pallio 2, 6.
31 De meo uestiuntur et primus informator litterarum et primus enodator uocis et primus numerorum harenarius et grammaticus et rhetor et sophista et medicus et poeta et qui musicam pulsat et qui stellarem coniectat et qui uolaticam spectat. Omnis liberalitas studiorum quattuor meis angulis tegitur. 

The Pallium: "From my store are clothed the first teacher of the forms of letters, the first explainer of their sounds, the first trainer in the rudiments of arithmetic, the grammarian, the rhetorician, the sophist, the medical man, the poet, the musical timebeater, the astrologer, and the birdgazer. All that is liberal in studies is covered by my four angles."

Text is Gerlo, translation is Thelwall.

De Pallio 6, 2
32 Omnium iam nunc dominicarum (sententiarum) suae sunt et causae et regulae; termini non in infinitum nec ad omnia spectant;

Even now, the declarations of the Lord have reasons and laws of their own. They are not of unlimited or universal application. 

Text is Bulhart, translation is Thelwall.  Tertullian means that stray phrases from scripture should not be used as catch-phrases apart from their context.

De fuga in persecutione 13, 3.
33 Exinde res viderint: aliud sunt figurae, aliud formae, aliud imagines, aliud definitiones: imagines transeunt adimpletae, definitiones permanent adimplendae; imagines prophetant, definitiones gubernant.

Figures are one thing; laws another. Images are one thing; statutes another. Images pass away when fulfilled: statutes remain permanently to be fulfilled. Images prophesy: statutes govern. 

Text is Bulhart, translation is Thelwall.

De Monogamia 6:6
34 ... facilius est, ut aliquam rationem  habeat unum illud capitulum, quae cum ceteris <s>apiat, quam ut apostolus diversa inter se docuisse videatur.

... it is easier (of belief) that that one passage should have some explanation agreeable with the others, than that an apostle should seem to have taught (principles) mutually diverse.

Text is Bulhart, translation is Thelwall.

De Monogamia 11:8
35 Habet et fides quorundam nominum familiaritatem. Ita in omni opusculo usum custodimus. 

"Faith," withal, has a familiar acquaintance with sundry appellations. So, in every one of our little works, we carefully guard usage. 

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 4:2
36 Christianum enim de restitutione Iudaei gaudere et non dolere conueniet, siquidem tota spes nostra cum reliqua Israelis expectatione coniuncta est. 

For it will be fitting for the Christian to rejoice, and not to grieve, at the restoration of Israel, if it be true, (as it is), that the whole of our hope is intimately united with the remaining expectation of Israel.

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 8:9
37 Quis enim timebit prodigere, quod habebit postea recuperare?

Who will fear to squander what he has the power of afterwards recovering?

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 9:10
38 Sed malumus in scripturis minus, si forte, sapere quam contra. Proinde sensum Domini custodire debemus atque praeceptum. Non est leuior transgressio in interpretatione quam in conuersatione.

But we prefer, if it must be so, to be less wise in the Scriptures, than to be wise against them. We are as much bound to keep the sense of the Lord as His precept. Transgression in interpretation is not lighter than in conversation.

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 9:22
39 Sed est hoc sollemne peruersis et idiotis haereticis, iam et psychicis uniuersis, alicuius capituli ancipitis occasione aduersus exercitum sententiarum instrumenti totius armari.

But this is the usual way with perverse and ignorant heretics; yes, and by this time even with Psychics universally: to arm themselves with the opportune support of some one ambiguous passage, in opposition to the disciplined host of sentences of the entire document.

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 16:24
40 Nam et ipsa ecclesia proprie et principaliter ipse est spiritus, in quo est trinitas unius diuinitatis, Pater et Filius et Spiritus sanctus. 

For the very Church itself is, properly and principally, the Spirit Himself, in whom is the Trinity of the One Divinity----Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Text is Munier, translation is Thelwall.

De Pudicitia 21:16
41 Infirma commendatio est quae de alterius destructione fulcitur.

Of little worth is the recommendation which has for its prop the defamation of another.

Text is Evans, translation is Holmes.

Adversus Marcionem IV.15:5
42 Metu enim ultionis omnis iniquitas refrenatur. Ceterum passim emissa libertate dominabitur, utrumque oculum effossura et omnem dentem excitatura prae impunitatis securitate. Sed hoc est dei optimi et tantum boni, patientiae iniuriam facere, violentiae ianuam pandere, probos non defendere, improbos non coercere.

For by the fear of vengeance all iniquity is curbed. But if licence is allowed to it without discrimination, it will get the mastery----it will put out (a man's) both eyes; it will knock out every tooth in the safety of its impunity. This, however, is (the principle) of your good and simply beneficent god----to do a wrong to patience, to open the door to violence, to leave the righteous undefended, and the wicked unrestrained!

Text is Evans, translation is Holmes.

Adversus Marcionem IV.16:7
43 Ita semper haeretici aut nudas et simplices voces coniecturis quo volunt rapiunt, aut rursus condicionales et rationales simplicitatis condicione dissolvunt, ut hoc in loco. 

In this manner heretics either wrest plain and simple words to any sense they choose by their conjectures, or else they violently resolve by a literal interpretation words which imply a conditional sense and are incapable of a simple solution, as in this passage.

Text is Evans, translation is Holmes.

Adversus Marcionem IV.19:6
44 Nihil enim mali necessarium. 

Nothing that is evil is necessary.

Text is Evans, translation is Holmes.

Adversus Marcionem IV.29:4
45 Est sapor et in paucis.

There is power also in brevity.

Text is Evans, translation is R. Pearse.

Adversus Marcionem V.15:1
46 Omnia periclitabuntur aliter accipi quam sunt, et amittere quod sunt dum aliter accipiuntur, si aliter quam sunt cognominantur. Fides nominum salus est proprietatum.

All things will be in danger of being taken in a sense different from their own proper sense, and, whilst taken in that different sense, of losing their proper one, if they are called by a name which differs from their natural designation. Fidelity in names secures the safe appreciation of properties. 

Text is Evans, translation is Thelwall.

De Carne Christi 13:2
47 Quotidie, omni momento oratio hominibus necessaria.

Daily, every moment, prayer is necessary to men.

Text is SC, translation is Thelwall.

De exhortatione castitatis 10:2
48 Puto nobis magis non licere nascentem nocere quam et natum. 

I think to us it is no more lawful to hurt (a child) in process of birth, than one (already) born.

Text is SC, translation is Thelwall.

De exhortatione castitatis 12:5
49 Quomodo amicos de mammona fabricabimus nobis, si eum in tantum amauerimus, ut amissum non sufferamus? Peribimus cum perdito. [11] Quid hic inuenimus, ubi habemus amittere? 

Gentilium est omnibus detrimentis inpatientiam adhibere, [sunt] qui rem pecuniariam fortasse animae anteponant. [12] Nam et faciunt, cum lucri cupiditatibus quaestuosa pericula mercimoniorum in mari exercent, cum pecuniae causa etiam in foro nihil damnationi timendum adgredi dubitant, cum denique ludo et castris sese locant, cum per uias inmemores bestiarum latrocinantur. [13] Nos uero, secundum diuersitatem qua cum illis stamus, non animam pro pecunia, sed pecuniam pro anima deponere conuenit, seu sponte in largiendo seu patienter in amittendo!

How shall we fashion to us friends from mammon, if we love it so much as not to put up with its loss? We shall perish together with the lost mammon. [11]  Why do we find here, where it is our business to lose

To exhibit impatience at all losses is the Gentiles' business, who give money the precedence perhaps over their soul; [12]  for so they do, when, in their cupidities of lucre, they encounter the gainful perils of commerce on the sea; when, for money's sake, even in the forum, there is nothing which damnation (itself) would fear which they hesitate to essay; when they hire themselves for sport and the camp; when, after the manner of wild beasts, they play the bandit along the highway. [13]  But us, according to the diversity by which we are distinguished from them, it becomes to lay down not our soul for money, but money for our soul, whether spontaneously in bestowing or patiently in losing.

Text is Fredouille, translation is Thelwall.

De Patientia 7:10-13
50 Quid enim refert inter prouocantem et prouocatum, nisi quod ille prior in maleficio deprehenditur, at ille posterior? Tamen uterque laesi hominis domino reus est qui omne nequam et prohibet et damnat. [3] Nulla in maleficio ordinis ratio est nec locus secernit quod similitudo coniungit. Absolute itaque praecipitur malum malo non rependendum: par factum par habet meritum.

What difference is there between provoker and provoked, except that the former is detected as prior in evil-doing, but the latter as posterior? Yet each stands impeached of hurting a man in the eye of the Lord, who both prohibits and condemns every wickedness. [3]  In evil doing there is no account taken of order, nor does place separate what similarity conjoins. And the precept is absolute, that evil is not to be repaid with evil.102 Like deed involves like merit.

Text is Fredouille, translation is Thelwall.

De Patientia, 10:2
51 Cum ergo spiritus Dei descendit, indiuidua patientia comitatur eum. 

When God's Spirit descends, then Patience accompanies Him indivisibly.

Text is Fredouille, translation is Thelwall.

De Patientia, 15:7
52 tanti boni nomen foedis operationibus occupant

They eagerly seize a name of so great goodness to apply it to foul practises

Text is Fredouille, translation is Thelwall.

De Patientia 16:4
53 tamen non ut gentiles ita nos quoque nobis adulemur, institutorem Deum solummodo existimantes, non etiam despectorem institutorum suorum.

Still let us not, as the Gentiles do, flatter ourselves with thinking that God is merely a Creator, not likewise a Downlooker on His own creatures.

Text is Turcan, translation is Thelwall.

De Cultu Feminarum II.10:4
54 Ceterum tempora christianorum semper et nunc uel maxime non auro sed ferro transiguntur.

But Christians and now more than ever, pass their times not in gold but in iron.

Translation is Thelwall.

De Cultu Feminarum II 13:6.

1. Augustine, De civitate Dei (The City of God), book 7, chapter 1: Qua in re non dico quod facetius ait Tertullianus fortasse quam verius: "Si dii eliguntur ut bulbi, utique ceteri reprobi iudicantur".  -- In respect to which matter I do not say what Tertullian said, perhaps more wittily than truly, "If gods are selected like onions, certainly the rest are rejected as bad."  Referring to Ad nat. 2, 9, 5. Si dei bulbi seliguntur, qui non seliguntur, reprobi pronuntiantur.


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