The Story of St. Augustine and the Toothache
"I continue to find that Augustine is one of the strangest people ever to have lived. Take, for instance, this passage:
dolore dentium tunc excruciabas me, et cum in tantum ingravesceret, ut non valerem loqui, ascendit in cor meum admonere omnes meos, qui aderant, ut deprecarentur te pro me, deum salutis omnimodae. et scripsi hoc in cera et dedi, ut eis legeretur. mox ut genus simplici affectu fiximus, fugit dolor ille. sed quis dolor? aut quomodo fugit? expavi, fateor, domine meus et deus meus: nihil enim tale ab ineunte aetate expertus fueram. (IX.4)
I find it difficult to believe that the biggest drama queen in the history of the world needed to write a message on a piece of wax for his friends to know that he had a toothache — especially the worst toothache he had ever had in his life.
But I do like that he was afraid when praying for its healing actually worked, and that his surprise was partly based on its severity. (“Yes, God can of course heal minor toothaches, but this one was serious!”)”