In what follows I shall investigate the usefulness of asceticism in acquiring social capital during one’s lifetime, and in ensuring the transfer of privileges, name, memory and various family traditions to generations to come among the elites of Late Antiquity.3 The first section shows how asceticism and chastity repeatedly come into view in connection with certain families: celibacy was, indeed, hereditary and formed an important part of the family heritage for some elite kin groups. The immaterial benefits of asceticism for individuals and the family group are analysed in the following sections; asceticism as a family tradition was a way of proclaiming family piety and a constituent of power and privileges in Christian communities. Ideas of nobilitas and fama were associated with asceticism and these were propagated and used as the superior way of attaining renown, nobility and immortal remembrance both on earth and among the members of the family of Christ. Indeed, the reputation of the ascetics spread throughout Christendom and an ascetic in the family would further contribute to the family status and to the perpetuation of the memory of the whole kin group and its members.