All Coptic Links - Coptic Directory - Orthodox Church Directory The Agbeya - The Coptic Book of Prayers (English Agbiya + Arabic Agpeya) English Bible + Holy Bible in other languages - Arabic, French, Ethiopian Amharic Holy Bible, ArabicBible, Enjeel Saint Takla dot org - Main page - English Photo and Image Gallery: Jesus - Mary - Saints - St. Takla - Church - Priests - Bible - Activities - pictures and Icons.. Download and listen to Hymns - Carols - Midnight Praise (Tasbeha) - Midis - Videos - Liturgies - Masses - Sermons - Online Streaming   Coptic Church Website Logo of Saint Takla Haymanot the Ethiopian Coptic Orthodox Website - Alexandria - Egypt - موقع الأنبا تكلا هيمانوت القبطي الأرثوذكسي FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions and Answers - Coptic and Christan Q&A - Faith, Creed, Site, Youth, Family, Holy Bible Contact Us - Address - Map - Online Support Send a free Christian and Coptic Greeting Cards to your friends موقع الكنيسة القبطية باللغة العربية - الموقع العربي StTaklaorg Site News and Updates Downloads.. Winamp Skins - Coptic fonts - Agbeya - Software - Freeware - Icons - Gallery - Mp3s Feedback - Submit URL - ideas - Suggestions.. Kids' Corner - Coloring - Songs - Games - Stories Free Coptic Books - Christian Arabic Books, Orthodox English Books  

Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. II:
City of God: Chapter 18

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 18.—Of the Beauty of the Universe, Which Becomes, by God’s Ordinance, More Brilliant by the Opposition of Contraries.

For God would never have created any, I do not say angel, but even man, whose future wickedness He foreknew, unless He had equally known to what uses in behalf of the p. 215 good He could turn him, thus embellishing, the course of the ages, as it were an exquisite poem set off with antitheses.  For what are called antitheses are among the most elegant of the ornaments of speech.  They might be called in Latin “oppositions,” or, to speak more accurately, “contrapositions;” but this word is not in common use among us, 488 though the Latin, and indeed the languages of all nations, avail themselves of the same ornaments of style.  In the Second Epistle to the Corinthians the Apostle Paul also makes a graceful use of antithesis, in that place where he says, “By the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report:  as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” 489   As, then, these oppositions of contraries lend beauty to the language, so the beauty of the course of this world is achieved by the opposition of contraries, arranged, as it were, by an eloquence not of words, but of things.  This is quite plainly stated in the Book of Ecclesiasticus, in this way:  “Good is set against evil, and life against death:  so is the sinner against the godly.  So look upon all the works of the Most High, and these are two and two, one against another.” 490



Quintilian uses it commonly in the sense of antithesis.


2 Cor. 6.7-10.


Ecclus. 33.15.

Next: Chapter 19

Send this page to a friend

St. Takla Church - Main Index111111111 - Commentary on the New Testament by Matthew Henry تفسير العهد القديم - متى هنرى

Like & share

© Saint Takla Haymanout Website: Coptic Orthodox Church - Alexandria, Egypt / URL: / Contact us at