The letters of Saint Augustine are an invaluable source of information in the areas of church history, liturgy, spirituality, theology, civil history, etc.
The correspondence of Augustine includes 308 letters: 252 that he wrote himself, 49 that others sent him, and 7 letters that others sent to a third party (29 additional letters were added by Professor Divjak in 1981). Some can actually be classified as books as Augustine notes in his Revisions. Each letter is preceded by its own introduction in which the translator offers valuable information about the persons, content, and background pertinent to the letter.
Perhaps the most revealing aspect of the letters is not so much the great variety of themes and persons, but the personality of Augustine himself that emerges.
The reader comes to know a very human and affectionate Augustine, especially in his writings to Nebridius and other friends. We see Augustine the reconciler, the man of justice and mercy, the healer. While he is steadfast in his many ideas and opinions, he also shows flexibility and a penchant for listening. Certainly, from these letters the reader will learn much about history and church history of that era and will gain insights into church teaching, law, and liturgy. Without a doubt one will encounter and be fascinated by the multifaceted Augustine.