Two communities bear the name of Saint-Augustin: the regular canons of Saint-Augustin and the hermits of Saint-Augustin.
Only the latter are designated by the appellation Augustins and constitute the order of Saint-Augustin.
Unlike other mendicant orders, the Order of Hermits of St. Augustine was not founded by a religious figure but was created by the will of the papacy, which wished to unite in a single order various hermitic congregations in Italy practicing begging.
The new Catholic religious order was definitively approved at the Council of Lyon in 1274. Structured according to the Dominican model, it was considered a mendicant order, but was not confirmed as such until 1567 by Pope Pius V.
In the 16th century, two branches of reformed Augustinians appeared: the Augustinians Récollets in 1588 (separated from the order in 1912) and the Augustinians in 1593 (separated from the order in 1931).
At the same time, the Conventual Augustinians or Grands-Augustins did not want a return to a more strict observance.
At the end of the Middle Ages, the Augustinians had around 2,000 convents and 30,000 members. Today local stability (stabilitas loci), foreign to the Mendicant Orders, remains a characteristic of the abbeys of the Augustinian friars whose order is organized in 26 provinces.