The City of God

Author: Saint Augustine  | Date: 413

Chapter 11.

Of the opinion of the Platonists, that the souls of men become demons when disembodied

He *0165 says, indeed, that the souls of men are demons, and that men become Lares if they are good, Lemures or Larvae if they are bad, and Manes if it is uncertain whether they deserve well or ill. Who does not see at a glance that this is a mere whirlpool sucking men to moral destruction? For, however wicked men have been, if they suppose they shall become Larvae or divine Manes, they will become the worse the more love they have for inflicting injury; for, as the Larvae are hurtful demons made out of wicked men, these men must suppose that after death they will be invoked with sacrifices and divine honours that they may inflict injuries. But this question we must not pursue. He also states that the blessed are called in Greek eudaimones, because they are good souls, that is to say, good demons, confirming his opinion that the souls of men are demons.


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Chicago: Saint Augustine, "Chapter 11.," The City of God, trans. Marcus Dods Original Sources, accessed October 4, 2022,

MLA: Augustine, Saint. "Chapter 11." The City of God, translted by Marcus Dods, Original Sources. 4 Oct. 2022.

Harvard: Augustine, S, 'Chapter 11.' in The City of God, trans. . Original Sources, retrieved 4 October 2022, from