Pictures ( reputedly ) of Saint Augustine

What did Saint Augustine look like ? It seems fairly clear that nobody knows. It didn't worry us for quite a long time ( and, for that matter, it still doesn't ), but as time has gone by it has occasionally seemed like a good idea to have something more than a name to look at in our Family Services. Here's a mildly interesting ( if you like that sort of thing ) collection of the results.

If you're looking for pictures of St Augustine's, try here.

The first time we wanted a picture of St Augustine was when we were getting together our Family Service of May 2004. We asked Hermione to make us one, and this is the result. We were properly impressed.

( Indeed, we were so impressed that we used her picture again when we were asked for a "symbol of St. Augustine's" to carry in procession at the installation of Rev. Charmaine Braatvedt as the vicar of our parish in 2009 - further details here. )

Quite some time afterwards, we found this picture in an article giving an account of St Augustine's mission. It seems rather likely that this was Hermione's model, as the similarity is strong - notice in particular the detail at the top of his crook. We still think she did a very good job - and Augustine's face in particular looks much more human in her version.

Long after that, in May 2009, we told the story of St. Augustine again. This time, we didn't really need a picture, but thought it would be nice to have one to include in our projector version of the shortened Family Service.

This is the picture we chose. It comes from this original; the date and artist are unknown. The face is pretty similar to the previous example, allowing for the difference in technique. The crook has an extra branch at the top, but maybe that's not too significant.

This was another example we considered; it looks like someone else entirely, but who are we to judge ? He has a well-grown beard, and a different sort of crook.

- and here's another one with a beard. Presumably he's holding Canterbury Cathedral on his knee.

We repeat our original question : what did Saint Augustine look like ?

( - not that it matters. What's important is what he did, and that was a wonderful ministry. )

Alan Creak,
2009 June.