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Philip Burton explores Augustine's treatment of language in his Confessions - a major work of Western philosophy and literature, with continuing intellectual importance. One of Augustine's key concerns is the story of his own encounters with language: from his acquisition of language as a child, through his career as schoolboy orator then star student at Carthage, to professor of rhetoric at Carthage and Rome. Having worked his way up to the eminence of Court Orator to the Roman Emperor at Milan, Augustine rediscovered the catholic Christianity of his childhood - and decided that this was incompatible with his rhetorical profession. Over the next ten years, he gradually reinvents himself as a different sort of language professional: a Christian intellectual, commentating on Scripture and preaching to his flock.