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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. V:
On Marriage and Concupiscence.: Chapter 52

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 52 [XXX.]—Sin Was the Origin of All Shameful Concupiscence.

“Do you,” he asks, “repeat your affirmation, ‘There would be no concupiscence if man had not first sinned; marriage, however, would have existed, even if no one had sinned’?” I never said, “There would be no concupiscence,” because there is a concupiscence of the spirit, which craves wisdom. 2319 My words were, “There would be no shameful concupiscence.” 2320 Let my words be re-perused, even those which he has cited, that it may be clearly seen how dishonestly they are handled by him. However, let him call it by any name he likes. What I said would not have existed unless man had previously sinned, was that which made them ashamed in paradise when they covered their loins, and which every one will allow would not have been felt, had not the sin of disobedience first occurred. Now he who wishes to understand what they felt, ought to consider what it was they covered. For of the fig-leaves they made themselves “aprons,” not clothes; and these aprons or kilts are called περιζώματα in Greek. Now all know well enough what it is which these peri-zomata cover, which some Latin writers explain by the word campestria. Who is ignorant of what persons wore this kilt, and what parts of the body such a dress concealed; even the same which the Roman youths used to cover when they practised naked in the campus, from which circumstance the name campester was given to the apron. 2321



Wisdom 6.21.


See above, Book i. ch. 1.


See On the City of God, Book xi. ch. 17.

Next: Chapter 53

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