The German name of AUGST was from the medieval given name AGOSTO, originally rendered in the Latin form AUGUSTUS, from 'Augere' (to increase, become greater). It was originally a title used by the Roman emperors after accession, and the name was popular also among early Christians, who read into it the implication that the bearer had become greater by being baptised. The month of August was so called after the first Emperor Augustus, and occasionally the given name was bestowed because of some association with the month. The earliest known instance of this name Augustine was St. Aurelius Augustinus, also known as Augustine of Hippo (354-430) the greatest of the Latin church fathers. He was born in Tagaste in Numidia which is modern Tunisia. His father was a pagan but he was brought up a christian by his devout mother Monica. After living a fairly racy youth, he embraced christianity fully, and was baptised, together with his son, by St. Ambrose in the year 386. His monumental opus was the City of God which he wrote between 412-27. His namesake St. Augustine was the first archbishop of Canterbury circa. 596. He was prior of the Benedictine Monastery of St. Andrew in Rome, when in 596, he was sent with forty other monks by Pope Gregory 1. to convert the Anglo-Saxons to Christianity. Landing in Thanet, the missionaries were kindly received by Ethelbert, King of Kent, whose wife Bertha, daughter of the Frankish King was a Christian. A residence was assigned to them at Canterbury, where they devoted themselves to monastic exercises and preaching. He was extremely successful in his mission, and it is recorded that in one day Augustine baptised one thousand persons in a day in the river Swale. He died in 604, and in 612 his body was transferred to his abbey of St. Peter and St. Paul. In the Middle Ages heraldry came into use as a practical matter. It originated in the devices used to distinguish the armoured warriors in tournament and war, and was also placed on seals as marks of identity. As far as records show, true heraldry began in the middle of the 12th century, and appeared almost simultaneously in several countries of Western Europe.
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