The Christian teaching on usury did not develop in a vacuum. Christianity was born in a semitic milieu and spread rapidly through the Graeco-Roman world. Naturally, its ancestry and its environment influenced its moral thinking. The Fathers of the Church were well acquainted with the thought of others about usury. Besides many references to the clear Old Testament usury prohibition, the writings of the Fathers reflect and interact with attitudes toward interest-taking in Greece and Rome and in early rabbinical literature. It will thus be helpful to examine those strains of thought that existed side by side with the early patristic teaching and influenced it.