Between the September of 387 and the end of 388 at the earliest, Augustine moved from Milan to Ostia, to Rome and then to Thagaste, his birthplace in North Africa.
After his baptism by Ambrose in Milan on Easter Sunday 387, Augustine remained there until towards autumn (September). He continued writing On the Immortality of the Soul and On Music. In the autumn of 387 (probably during September), he decided to return to North Africa, accompanied by his mother, Monica, his son Adeodatus, and his companions, Evodius and Alypius.
To wait out the blockade, Augustine went to Rome for about one year with Evodius, later bishop of Uzalis - his friend who had also been with him in Milan and at the death of Monica in Ostia. In the fourteenth century there were Augustinian authors who wrote down legends that Augustine did more than visit Rome during the period of the twelve months mentioned above. In an effort to strengthen the identity of the Augustinian Order as its literally coming from Augustine himself, they promoted legends that variously suggested that he went to Tuscany to experience eremitical (hermit-like) life there.Furthermore they proposed that while there he wrote his Rule for an eremitical community there, that he actually founded a community there, that he visited the (later) Augustinian monastery of Lecceto, that Bishop Ambrose of Milan had given him a religious habit at the time of his baptism, etc. All of these suggestions are fanciful and incorrect because Augustine's book called Retractions provides a first-hand report of his presence and activity in Rome. And credence is no longer given to the medieval legend that, as well as live in Rome, he was also in Tuscany but simply forgot to record the fact because of the depth of his grief for his recently-deceased mother.
Photo Gallery For the Augnet gallery on Ostia where Saints Monica and Augustine lived briefly immediately before Monica died, click here.
Ostia. The Harbour City of Ancient Romehttp://www.ostia-antica.org AN1111