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Encyclopedia > Constantine I (emperor)
Head of Constantine's colossal statue at Musei Capitolini
Head of Constantine's colossal statue at Musei Capitolini

Gaius Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus[1] (February 27, 272May 22, 337), commonly known as Constantine I, Constantine the Great, or (among Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic[2] Christians) Saint Constantine, was a Roman Emperor, proclaimed Augustus by his troops on July 25, 306 and who ruled an ever-growing portion of the Roman Empire until his death. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (538x858, 224 KB) Summary Head of the colossal marble statue of Constantine I, Musei Capitolini, Rome Photographer: Markus Bernet Date: 07/10/2004 Licensing File links The following pages link to this file: Constantine I (emperor) Metadata This file contains additional... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (538x858, 224 KB) Summary Head of the colossal marble statue of Constantine I, Musei Capitolini, Rome Photographer: Markus Bernet Date: 07/10/2004 Licensing File links The following pages link to this file: Constantine I (emperor) Metadata This file contains additional... Michelangelos design for Capitoline Hill, now home to the Capitoline Museums. ... February 27 is the 58th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... Events Roman emperor Aurelian reconquers the kingdom of Palmyra (Egypt and large parts of Asia Minor), forcing queen Zenobia to flee to Parthia. ... May 22 is the 142nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (143rd in leap years). ... Events February 6 - Julius is elected pope. ... Roman Emperor is the term historians use to refer to rulers of the Roman Empire, after the epoch conventionally named the Roman Republic. ... Augustus (plural augusti) is Latin for majestic or venerable. The feminine form is Augusta. ... July 25 is the 206th day (207th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar, with 159 days remaining. ... Events July 25 - Constantine I proclaimed Roman Emperor by his troops. ... For other uses, see Roman Empire (disambiguation). ...


Constantine is best remembered in modern times for the Edict of Milan in 313, which fully legalized Christianity in the Empire, for the first time, and the Council of Nicaea in 325; these actions are considered major factors in the spreading of the Christian religion. His reputation as the "first Christian Emperor" has been promulgated by historians from Lactantius and Eusebius of Caesarea to the present day; although there has been debate over the veracity of his faith because he was baptized only on his death bed.[3] The Edict of Milan (AD 313) declared that the Roman Empire would be neutral with regard to religious worship, officially ending all government-sanctioned persecution, especially of Christianity. ... Christianity is a monotheistic religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus as recounted in the New Testament. ... The First Council of Nicaea, convoked by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in 325, was the first ecumenical[1] conference of bishops of the Christian Church. ... Lucius Caelius (or Caecilius?) Firmianus Lactantius was an early Christian author who wrote in Latin (c. ... Eusebius of Caesarea Eusebius of Caesarea (~275 – May 30, 339) (often called Eusebius Pamphili, Eusebius [the friend] of Pamphilus) was a bishop of Caesarea in Palestine and is often referred to as the father of church history because of his work in recording the history of the early Christian church. ... Baptism in early Christian art. ...

Contents


Life

Early life

Bronze statue of Constantine I in York, England, near the spot where he was proclaimed Emperor in 306
Bronze statue of Constantine I in York, England, near the spot where he was proclaimed Emperor in 306

Constantine was born at Naissus (today's Niš, Serbia) in the province of Upper Moesia on 27 February 272 or 273, to Roman general, Constantius Chlorus, and his first wife Helena, an innkeeper's daughter who at the time was only sixteen years old. His father left his mother around 292 to marry Flavia Maximiana Theodora, daughter or step-daughter of the Western Roman Emperor Maximian. Theodora would give birth to six half-siblings of Constantine, including Julius Constantius. Statue of the roman emperor Constantine File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Statue of the roman emperor Constantine File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... York is a city in northern England, at the confluence of the Rivers Ouse and Foss. ... Royal motto (French): Dieu et mon droit (Translated: God and my right) Englands location (dark green) within the United Kingdom (light green), with the Republic of Ireland (blue) to its west Languages English Capital London Largest city London Area – Total Ranked 1st UK 130,395 km² Population –mid-2004... Niš (Ниш, the Roman Naissus; see below) is a city in Serbia and Montenegro (formerly Yugoslavia), 43. ... Motto: none Anthem: Bože Pravde Capital Belgrade Largest city Belgrade Official language(s) Serbian1 Government Republic  - President Boris Tadić  - Prime Minister Vojislav KoÅ¡tunica Independence    - From the Ottoman Empire July 13, 1878   - Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes formed December 1, 1918   - FR Yugoslavia formed April 28, 1992   - Serbia... Moesia is an ancient province situated in the areas of modern Serbia and Bulgaria. ... On the reverse of this argenteus struck in Antioch under Constantius Chlorus, the tetrarcs are sacrificing to celebrate a victory against the Sarmatians. ... st Helena was a great gal she was really great ... Flavia Maximiana Theodora (known as Theodora) was the daughter or step-daughter of Maximian. ... The Western Roman Empire is the name given to the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian. ... Maximian Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus Herculius (c. ... Flavius Julius Constantius (d. ...


Young Constantine served at the court of Diocletian in Nicomedia, after the appointment of his father as one of the two caesares (junior emperors) of the Tetrarchy in 293. In 305, both Augusti, Diocletian and Maximian, abdicated, and Constantius succeeded to Maximian's position of western Augustus. Although two legitimate sons of emperors were available (Constantine and Maxentius, the son of Maximian), both of them were ignored in the transition of power. Instead, Severus and Maximinus Daia were made caesares. Constantine subsequently left Nicomedia to join his father in Roman Gaul. However, Constantius fell sick during an expedition against the Picts of Caledonia, and died on July 25, 306 in Eboracum (York). The general Chrocus, of Alamannic descent, and the troops loyal to Constantius' memory immediately proclaimed Constantine an Augustus ("Emperor"). Emperor Diocletian. ... Nicomedia (modern Ä°zmit, also known as Iznik) was founded by Nicomedes I of Bithynia at the head of the Gulf of Astacus (which opens on the Propontis) in 264 BC. The city has ever since been one of the chief towns in this part of Asia Minor. ... Caesar (p. ... The Tetrarchs, a porphyry sculpture sacked from a Byzantine palace in 1204, Treasury of St. ... Augustus (plural augusti) is Latin for majestic or venerable. The feminine form is Augusta. ... Maximian Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus Herculius (c. ... Abdication (from the Latin abdicatio disowning, renouncing, from ab, from, and dicare, to declare, to proclaim as not belonging to one), the act whereby a person in office renounces and gives up the same before the expiry of the time for which it is held. ... Maxentius as Augustus on a coin. ... Flavius Valerius Severus as caesar. ... Maximinus denarius Gaius Valerius Galerius Maximinus (20 November 270? - July/August, 313) Roman emperor from AD 308 to 313, was originally an Illyrian shepherd named Daia. ... Map of Gaul circa 58 BC Gaul (Latin Gallia, Greek Galatia) was the region of Western Europe occupied by present day northern Italy, France, Belgium, western Switzerland and the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the west bank of the Rhine river. ... The Pictish Strathpeffer eagle stone, Highland, Scotland. ... Caledonia is an old Latin name (given by the Roman Empire) for a region corresponding approximately to the part of modern-day Scotland north of a line between the estuaries of the rivers Forth and Clyde. ... July 25 is the 206th day (207th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar, with 159 days remaining. ... Events July 25 - Constantine I proclaimed Roman Emperor by his troops. ... York is a city in northern England, at the confluence of the Rivers Ouse and Foss. ... Chrocus (also Crocus) was a leader of the Alamanni in the late 3rd century. ... The Alamanni, Allemanni, or Alemanni were an alliance of warbands formed from Germanic tribes, first mentioned by Dio Cassius when they fought Caracalla in 213. ...


Under the tetrarchy, Constantine's succession was of dubious legitimacy. While Constantius as senior emperor could "create" a new caesar, Constantine's (or, his troops') claim to the title of Augustus ignored the system of succession established in 305. Accordingly, Constantine asked Galerius, the eastern Augustus, to be recognized as heir to his father's throne. Galerius granted him the title of caesar, confirming Constantine's rule over his father's territories, and promoted Severus to Augustus of the West. Galerius on a coin Galerius Maximianus (c. ...


Ruler of the West

Constantine's share of the empire comprised of Britain, Gaul, the Germanic provinces, and Spain. He therefore commanded one of the largest Roman armies, stationed along the important Rhine frontier. While Gaul was one of the richer regions of the empire, it had suffered much during the Crisis of the Third Century. Many areas were depopulated, the cities ruined. During his years in Gaul, from 306 to 316, Constantine continued his father's efforts to secure the Rhine frontier and rebuild the Gallic provinces. His main residence during that time was Trier. Gaul in the Roman Empire Roman Gaul consisted of an area of provincial rule in what would become modern day France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and western Germany. ... In the Roman era Germania was the Latin name for a geographical area that stretched from the west bank of the Rhine to a vaguely-defined eastern frontier with the forest and steppe regions of modern Russia and Ukraine. ... Loreley At 1,320 kilometres (820 miles) and an average discharge of more than 2,000 cubic meters per second, the Rhine (Dutch Rijn, French Rhin, German Rhein, Italian: Reno, Romansch: Rein, ) is one of the longest and most important rivers in Europe. ... Crisis of the Third Century (also known as the Military Anarchy or the Imperial Crisis ) is a commonly applied name for the crumbling and near collapse of the Roman Empire between 235 and 284 caused by the three simultaneous crises of external invasion, internal civil war and economic collapse. ... Trier (French: Trèves, Spanish: Treveris, Italian: Treviri) is Germanys oldest city. ...


Immediately after his promotion to emperor, Constantine abandoned his father's British campaign and returned to Gaul to quell an uprising by Franks. Another expedition against Frankish tribes followed in 308. After this victory, he began to build a bridge across the Rhine at Cologne to establish a permanent stronghold on the right bank of the river. A new campaign in 310 had to be abandoned because of Maximian's rebellion (below). The last of Constantine's wars on the Rhine frontier took place in 313, after his return from Italy, and saw him again victorious. Constantine's main goal was stability, and he tried to achieve that by immediate, often brutal punitive expeditions against rebellious tribes, demonstrating his military power by conquering the enemies on their own side of the Rhine frontier, and slaughtering many prisoners during games in the arena. The strategy proved successful, as the Rhine frontier remained relatively quiet during the rest of Constantine's reign. For other uses, see Franks (disambiguation). ... population_ref = source style=vertical-align: top; Cologne (German: ; Kölsch: Kölle) is Germanys fourth-largest city after Berlin, Hamburg and Munich and is the largest city both in the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and within the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Area, one of the largest European...


In the interior conflicts of the Tetrarchy, Constantine tried to remain neutral. In 307, the senior emperor Maximian (recently returned to the political scene after his abdication in 305) visited Constantine to get his support in the war of Maxentius against Severus and Galerius. Constantine married Maximian's daughter Fausta to seal the alliance and was promoted to Augustus by Maximian. He didn't interfere on Maxentius' behalf, though. Maximian returned to Gaul in 308 after he had failed to depose his son. At the conference of Carnuntum, where Diocletian, Galerius and Maximian met later that year, Maximian was forced to abdicate again and Constantine reduced to caesar. In 309, Maximian rebelled against his son-in-law while Constantine was campaigning against the Franks. The rebellion was quickly quelled, and Maximian killed or forced to commit suicide. The Tetrarchs, a porphyry sculpture sacked from a Byzantine palace in 1204, Treasury of St. ... Maximian Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus Herculius (c. ... Maxentius as Augustus on a coin. ... Flavius Valerius Severus as caesar. ... Galerius on a coin Galerius Maximianus (c. ... Fausta, as Salus, holding her two sons, Constantine II and Constantius II. Fausta Flavia Maxima was the daughter of the Roman Emperor Maximianus. ... Heidentor (pagan gate) Carnuntum (Kapvoiis in Ptolemy) was an important Roman fortress, originally belonging to Noricum, but after the 1st century A.D. to Pannonia. ... Emperor Diocletian. ... Galerius on a coin Galerius Maximianus (c. ...


312-324

His victory in 312 over Maxentius at the Battle of Milvian Bridge resulted in his becoming Western Augustus, or ruler of the entire Western Roman Empire. He gradually consolidated his military superiority over his rivals in the crumbling Tetrarchy. Events October 28 - Battle of Milvian Bridge: Constantine defeats Maxentius in the fight to become emperor of Rome. ... Maxentius as Augustus on a coin. ... Combatants Constantinian forces Maxentian forces Commanders Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius† Strength ~50000 men ~75000-120000 men Casualties Unknown Unknown The Battle of Milvian Bridge took place on October 28, 312 between the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Maxentius. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Tetrarchs, a porphyry sculpture sacked from a Byzantine palace in 1204, Treasury of St. ...


In the year 320, Licinius, emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire, reneged on the religious freedom promised by the Edict of Milan in 313 and began another persecution of the Christians. This was a puzzling inconsistency since Constantia, half-sister of Constantine and wife of Licinius, was an influential Christian. It became a challenge to Constantine in the west, climaxing in the great civil war of 324. The armies were so large another like these would not be seen again until at least the 14th century. Licinius, aided by Goth mercenaries, represented the past and the ancient faith of Paganism. Constantine and his Franks marched under the Christian standard of the labarum, and both sides saw the battle in religious terms. Supposedly outnumbered, but fired by their zeal, Constantine's army emerged victorious. With the defeat and death of Licinius (Constantine was known for being ruthless with his political enemies: Constantine had publicly promised to spare his life, but a year later he accused him of plotting against him and had him executed by strangulation), Constantine then became the sole emperor of the entire Roman Empire.[4] As of Licinius Aureus of Licinius, celebrating his tenth year of reign and the fifth year of his son Licinius. ... Byzantine Empire is the term conventionally used to describe the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages, centered around its capital in Constantinople. ... The Edict of Milan (AD 313) declared that the Roman Empire would be neutral with regard to religious worship, officially ending all government-sanctioned persecution, especially of Christianity. ... Look up Persecution in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Constantia is the name of a CDP, a town in Oswego County, New York, and a genus in the orchid family (Orchidaceae): Constantia (CDP) Constantia (town) Constantia (orchid) Constantia (wine) This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... A civil war is a war in which parties within the same culture, society or nationality fight for political power or control of an area. ... Invasion of the Goths: a late 19th century painting by O. Fritsche portrays the Goths as cavalrymen. ... A mercenary is a soldier who fights, or engages in warfare primarily for private gain, usually with little regard for ideological, national or political considerations. ... Paganism (from Latin paganus, meaning a country dweller or civilian) is a blanket term which has come to connote a broad set of spiritual or religious beliefs and practices of natural or polytheistic religions, as opposed to the Abrahamic monotheistic religions. ... For other uses, see Franks (disambiguation). ... The Labarum An image of the labarum, with the Greek letters Alpha and Omega inscribed. ...


Founding of Byzantium

Constantine the Great, mosaic in Hagia Sophia, Constantinople, c. 1000.
Constantine the Great, mosaic in Hagia Sophia, Constantinople, c. 1000.

Licinius' defeat represented the passing of old Rome, and the beginning of the role of the Eastern Roman Empire as a center of learning, prosperity, and cultural preservation. Constantine rebuilt the city of Byzantium, and renamed it Nova Roma (New Rome), providing it with a Senate and civic offices similar to those of Rome, and the new city was protected by the alleged True Cross, the Rod of Moses and other holy relics, though a cameo now at the Hermitage Museum also represented Constantine crowned by the tyche of the new city [1]. The figures of old gods were replaced and often assimilated into Christian symbolism. On the site of a temple to Aphrodite was built the new Basilica of the Apostles. Generations later there was the story that a Divine vision lead Constantine to this spot, and an angel no one else could see, led him on a circuit of the new walls. After his death, his capital was renamed Constantinopolis (in English Constantinople, " Constantine's City").[5] Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1576x2027, 490 KB) Description: Title: de: Mosaiken in der Hagia Sophia, Szene: Maria als Stadtheilige Istanbuls, Detail: Kaiser Konstantin der Große mit dem Stadtmodell Technique: de: Mosaik Dimensions: Country of origin: de: Türkei Current location (city): de: Istanbul Current... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1576x2027, 490 KB) Description: Title: de: Mosaiken in der Hagia Sophia, Szene: Maria als Stadtheilige Istanbuls, Detail: Kaiser Konstantin der Große mit dem Stadtmodell Technique: de: Mosaik Dimensions: Country of origin: de: Türkei Current location (city): de: Istanbul Current... Hagia Sophia as it appears today A section of the original architecture of Hagia Sophia Hagia Sophia (Church of Holy Wisdom), now known as the Ayasofya Museum, is a former Eastern Orthodox church converted to a mosque in 1453, converted into a museum in 1935, in the Turkish city of... Constantinople[1] was the name of the modern-day city of İstanbul, Turkey over the centuries that it served as the second capital of the unified Roman Empire, and after its division into East and West, of the Eastern Roman Empire, also known as the Byzantine Empire (from the city... Byzantine Empire is the term conventionally used to describe the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages, centered around its capital in Constantinople. ... Byzantium was an ancient Greek city-state, founded by Greek colonists from Megara in 667 BC and named after their king Byzas or Byzantas (Βύζας or Βύζαντας in Greek). ... New Rome is a term that can be applied to a city or a country. ... The Byzantine Senate was a nominal continuation of the Roman Senate, established in the 4th century by Constantine I. It survived for centuries but was increasingly irrelevant until its eventual disappearance in the 13th century. ... According to Christian tradition, the True Cross is the cross upon which Jesus was crucified. ... Moses or Móshe (מֹשֶׁה, Standard Hebrew, Tiberian Hebrew Mōšeh, Arabic موسى Mūsa, Geez ሙሴ Musse) is a legendary Hebrew liberator, leader, lawgiver, prophet, and historian. ... A relic is an object, especially a piece of the body or a personal item of someone of religious significance, carefully preserved with an air of veneration as a tangible memorial, Relics are an important aspect of Buddhism, some denominations of Christianity, Hinduism, shamanism, and many other personal belief systems. ... The State Hermitage Museum (Государственный Эрмитаж) in St. ... Tyche on the reverse of this coin by Gordian III. In Greek mythology, Tyche (Roman equivalent: Fortuna) was the presiding tutelary deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. ... Christian symbolism is the use of actions or objects to represent the truths of the Christian faith, either as a reminder of those truths or as a way of spiritually connecting with the underlying truth or act. ... Birth of Venus (a. ... The Basilica of the Apostles (Polyandreion) in Constantinople was the magnificent and wondrous cruciform church built by Constantine the Great, which was described by Eusebius of Caesarea, who mentioned porticoes along the four sides and walls faced with marble up to the gilded roof. ... In religion, visions comprise inspirational renderings, generally of a future state and/or of a mythical being, and are believed (by followers of the religion) to come from a deity, directly or indirectly via prophets, and serve to inspire or prod believers as part of a revelation or an epiphany. ... The Annunciation - the Angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will bear Jesus (El Greco, 1575) An angel is an ethereal being found in many religions, whose duties are to assist and serve God. ... Constantinople[1] was the name of the modern-day city of İstanbul, Turkey over the centuries that it served as the second capital of the unified Roman Empire, and after its division into East and West, of the Eastern Roman Empire, also known as the Byzantine Empire (from the city...


326-death

The Baptism of Constantine, as imagined by Raphael students.
The Baptism of Constantine, as imagined by Raphael students.

In 326, Constantine had his eldest son Crispus tried and executed, as he believed accusations that Crispus had an affair with Fausta, Constantine's second wife. A few months later he also had Fausta killed as the apparent source of these false accusations. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1191x740, 177 KB) Permission from www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1191x740, 177 KB) Permission from www. ... Self-portrait by Raphael. ... Crispus on a coin issued to celebrate Constantine I victory over Goths in 323. ... Fausta, as Salus, holding her two sons, Constantine II and Constantius II. Fausta Flavia Maxima was the daughter of the Roman Emperor Maximianus. ...


Constantine, following one custom at the time which postponed baptism till old age or death[6], was not baptized until close to his death in 337, when his choice fell upon the Arian bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia, who happened, despite his being an ally of Arius, to still be the bishop of the region. Also, Eusebius was a close friend of Constantine's sister; she probably secured his recall from exile. Baptism in early Christian art. ... Eusebius of Nicomedia and Constantinople, (d. ... Arius (AD/CE 256 - 336, poss. ... A bishop is an ordained member of the Christian clergy who, in certain Christian churches, holds a position of authority. ...


Succession

He was succeeded by his three sons by Fausta, Constantine II, Constantius II, and Constans. A number of relatives were murdered by followers of Constantius. He also had two daughters, Constantina and Helena, wife of Emperor Julian. Constantine II as caesar. ... Constantius II coin, celebrating the 15th year of reign. ... Bronze coin bearing the profile of Constans Flavius Julius Constans (320 - January 18, 350), was a Roman Emperor who ruled from 337 to 350. ... Constantina Augusta was the eldest daughter of Constantine the Great, Roman Emperor. ... Flavius Claudius Iulianus, also known as Julian the Philosopher, was the last pagan Roman Emperor. ...


Constantine and Christianity

Main article: Constantine I and Christianity

Constantine is best known for being the first Roman Emperor to embrace Christianity, although he may have continued in his pre-Christian beliefs as well, and along with his co-Emperor Licinius was the first to grant Christianity the status of an allowed religion (religio licita). This article covers the events of, reaction to, and historical legacy of Roman Emperor Constantine Is legalization, legitimization, and conversion to Christianity. ... Christianity is a monotheistic religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus as recounted in the New Testament. ... As of Licinius Aureus of Licinius, celebrating his tenth year of reign and the fifth year of his son Licinius. ...


Reforms

Constantine's iconography and ideology

Coins struck for emperors often reveal details of their personal iconography. During the early part of Constantine's rule, representations first of Mars and then (from 310) of Apollo as Sun god consistently appear on the reverse of the coinage. Mars had been associated with the Tetrarchy, and Constantine's use of this symbolism served to emphasize the legitimacy of his rule. After his breach with his father's old colleague Maximian in 309–310, Constantine began to claim legitimate descent from the 3rd century emperor Marcus Aurelius Claudius Gothicus, the hero of the Battle of Naissus (September, 268). The Augustan History of the 4th century reports Constantine's paternal grandmother Claudia to be a daughter of Crispus, Crispus being a reported brother of both Claudius II and Quintillus. Historians however suspect this account to be a genealogical fabrication to flatter Constantine. Iconography usually refers to the design, creation, and interpretation of the symbolism within religious art. ... Mars was the Roman god of war, the son of Juno and a magical flower (or Jupiter). ... Lycian Apollo, early Imperial Roman copy of a fourth century Greek original (Louvre Museum) In Greek and Roman mythology, Apollo (Greek: Απόλλων, Apóllōn; or Απελλων, Apellōn), the ideal of the kouros,[1] was the archer-god of medicine and healing and also a bringer of death-dealing plague; as... The Trundholm sun chariot pulled by a horse is believed to be a sculpture illustrating an important part of Nordic Bronze Age mythology. ... The Tetrarchs, a porphyry sculpture sacked from a Byzantine palace in 1204, Treasury of St. ... Maximian Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus Herculius (c. ... Claudius Gothicus on a coin celebrating his equity (AEQUITAS AUGUSTI). ... Combatants Roman Empire Goths Commanders Gallienus Aurelius Claudius (commander in chief) Domitius Aurelianus (cavalry commander) Strength unknown unknown Casualties unknown 30,000 to 50,000 The Battle of Naissus took place in September of 268 between the armies of the Goths and forces of the Roman Empire, led by Emperor... The Augustan History (Lat. ... Quintillus picture on a coin. ... Genealogy is the study and tracing of family pedigrees. ... Fabrication may refer to more than one thing: Fabrication (metal) Semiconductor device fabrication Lie Fiction Fable This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ...

Coin of Constantine, with depiction of the sun god Sol Invictus, holding a globe and right hand raised. The legend on the reverse reads SOLI INVICTO COMITI, to (Constantine's) "companion, the unconquered Sol".
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Coin of Constantine, with depiction of the sun god Sol Invictus, holding a globe and right hand raised. The legend on the reverse reads SOLI INVICTO COMITI, to (Constantine's) "companion, the unconquered Sol".
Follis by Constantine. On the reverse, a labarum with the chi-rho.
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Follis by Constantine. On the reverse, a labarum with the chi-rho.

Gothicus had claimed the divine protection of Apollo-Sol Invictus. In mid-310, two years before the victory at the Milvian Bridge, Constantine reportedly experienced the publicly announced vision in which Apollo-Sol Invictus appeared to him with omens of success. Thereafter the reverses of his coinage were dominated for several years by his "companion, the unconquered Sol" — the inscriptions read SOLI INVICTO COMITI. The depiction represents Apollo with a solar halo, Helios-like, and the globe in his hands. In the 320s Constantine has a halo of his own. There are also coins depicting Apollo driving the chariot of the Sun on a shield Constantine is holding and another in 312 shows the Christian chi-rho on a helmet Constantine is wearing. Image File history File links Follis-Constantine-lyons_RIC_VI_309. ... Image File history File links Follis-Constantine-lyons_RIC_VI_309. ... Coin of Emperor Probus, circa 280, with Sol Invictus riding a quadriga, with legend SOLI INVICTO, to the undefeated Sun. Sol Invictus (the unconquered sun) or, more fully, Deus Sol Invictus (the unconquered sun god) was a religious title applied to three distinct divinities during the later Roman Empire. ... A globe This article is on a planet-representation device. ... Image File history File links As-Constantine-XR_RIC_vII_019. ... Image File history File links As-Constantine-XR_RIC_vII_019. ... A follis of Galerius as caesar The follis (plural folles) was a large bronze coin introduced in about 294 with the coinage reform of Diocletian. ... The Labarum An image of the labarum, with the Greek letters Alpha and Omega inscribed. ... An image of the labarum, with the letters Alpha and Omega inscribed. ... Combatants Constantinian forces Maxentian forces Commanders Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius† Strength ~50000 men ~75000-120000 men Casualties Unknown Unknown The Battle of Milvian Bridge took place on October 28, 312 between the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Maxentius. ... Helios in Greek In earlier Greek mythology, the sun was personified as a deity called Hêlios (Greek for the sun), whom Homer equates with the sun Titan, Hyperion. ... An image of the labarum, with the letters Alpha and Omega inscribed. ...

An example of "staring eyes" on later Constantine coinage.
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An example of "staring eyes" on later Constantine coinage.

The great staring eyes in the iconography of Constantine, though not specifically Christian, show how official images were moving away from early imperial conventions of realistic portrayal towards schematic representations: the Emperor as Emperor, not merely as this particular individual Constantine, with his characteristic broad jaw and cleft chin. The large staring eyes will loom larger as the 4th century progresses: compare the early 5th century silver coinage of Theodosius I. Constantine I. 307-337 AD. AV Multiple of 1 1/2 Solidi (6. ... Constantine I. 307-337 AD. AV Multiple of 1 1/2 Solidi (6. ... On the reverse of this coin minted under Valentinian II, both Valentinian and Theodosius are depicted with halos. ...


Constantine's legal standards

Constantine passed laws making the occupations of butcher and baker hereditary, and more importantly, supported converting the coloni (tenant farmers) into serfs — laying the foundation for European society during the Middle Ages. The Butcher and his Servant, drawn and engraved by J. Amman (Sixteenth Century). ... A loaf of bread A baker is someone who primarily bakes and sells bread. ... A tenant farmer is one who resides on and farms land owned by a landlord. ... Costumes of Slaves or Serfs, from the Sixth to the Twelfth Centuries, collected by H. de Vielcastel, from original Documents in the great Libraries of Europe. ... World map showing Europe Political map Europe is one of the seven continents of Earth which, in this case, is more a cultural and political distinction than a physiographic one, leading to various perspectives about Europes borders. ... Human relationships within an ethnically diverse society. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ...


Constantine's laws in many ways improved those of his predecessors, though they also reflect his more violent age. Some examples:

  • For the first time, girls could not be abducted (this may actually refer to elopements, which were considered kidnapping because girls could not legally consent to the elopement).
  • A punishment of death was mandated to anyone collecting taxes over the authorized amount.
  • A prisoner was no longer to be kept in total darkness, but must be given the outdoors and daylight.
  • A condemned man was allowed to die in the arena, but he could not be branded on his "heavenly beautified" face, just on the feet (because God made man in His image).
  • Slave "nurses" or chaperones caught allowing the girls they were responsible for to be seduced were to have molten lead poured down their throats.
  • Gladiatorial games were ordered to be eliminated in 325, although this had little real effect.
  • A slave master's rights were limited, but a slave could still be beaten to death.
  • Crucifixion was abolished for reasons of Christian piety, but was replaced with hanging, to show there was Roman law and justice.
  • Easter could be publicly celebrated.
  • Sunday was declared a day of rest, on which markets were banned and public offices were closed (except for the purpose of freeing slaves). However, there were no restrictions on farming work (which was the work of the great majority of the population).[7]

Pollice Verso, an 1872 painting by Jean-Léon Gérôme, is a well known history painters researched conception of a gladiatorial combat. ... Artistic depiction of the crucifixion of Jesus. ... Suicide by hanging. ... This article is about the Christian festival. ...

Constantine's legacy

Although he earned his honorific of "The Great" from Christian historians long after he had died, he could have claimed the title on his military achievements and victories alone. In addition to reuniting the empire under one emperor, Constantine won major victories over the Franks and Alamanni (306–308), the Franks again (313–314), the Visigoths in 332 and the Sarmatians in 334. In fact, by 336, Constantine had actually reoccupied most of the long-lost province of Dacia, which Aurelian had been forced to abandon in 271. At the time of his death, he was planning a great expedition to put an end to raids on the eastern provinces from the Persian Empire. For other uses, see Franks (disambiguation). ... The Alamanni, Allemanni, or Alemanni were an alliance of warbands formed from Germanic tribes, first mentioned by Dio Cassius when they fought Caracalla in 213. ... The Visigoths, originally Tervingi, or Vesi (the noble ones), one of the two main branches of the Goths (of which the Ostrogothi were the other), were one of the loosely-termed Germanic peoples that disturbed the late Roman Empire. ... Sarmatia Europæa separated from Sarmatia Asiatica by the Tanais (the River Don), based on Greek literary sources, in a map printed in London, ca 1770. ... Dacia, in ancient geography the land of the Daci, named by the ancient Greeks Getae, was a large district of Southeastern Europe, bounded on the north by the Carpathians, on the south by the Danube, on the west by the Tisa, on the east by the Tyras or Nistru, now... Lucius Domitius Aurelianus (September 9, 214–275), known in English as Aurelian, Roman Emperor (270–275), was the second of several highly successful soldier-emperors who helped the Roman Empire regain its power during the latter part of the third century and the beginning of the fourth. ... The Persian Empire was a series of historical empires that ruled over the Iranian plateau. ...


The Byzantine Empire considered Constantine its founder and also the Holy Roman Empire reckoned him among the venerable figures of its tradition. In both East and West, Emperors were sometimes hailed as a "new Constantine". Most Eastern Christian churches, both Catholic and Orthodox, consider Constantine a saint. In the East he is sometimes called "isapostolos" or the "13th apostle"[2]. Byzantine Empire (Greek: Βυζαντινή Αυτοκρατορία) is the term conventionally used since the 19th century to describe the Greek-speaking Roman Empire during the Middle Ages, centered at its capital in Constantinople. ... The Holy Roman Empire and from the 16th century on also The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation was a political conglomeration of lands in Central Europe in the Middle Ages and the early modern period. ... An equal-to-the-apostles is a special title given to some canonized Saints in Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Rite churches as an outstanding recognition of their service in spreading and assertion of Christianity comparable to that of the original apostles. ...


Legend and Donation of Constantine

Main article: Donation of Constantine

In later years, historical facts were clouded by legend. It was considered inappropriate that Constantine was baptized only on his death-bed and by a bishop of questionable orthodoxy, and hence a legend emerged that Pope Silvester I (314-335) had cured the pagan Emperor from leprosy. According to this legend, Constantine was baptized after that and donated buildings to the Pope. In the 8th century, a document called the "Donation of Constantine" first appeared, in which the freshly converted Constantine hands the temporal rule over Rome, Italy and the Occident to the Pope. In the High Middle Ages, this document was used and accepted as the basis for the Pope's temporal power, though it was denounced as a forgery by Emperor Otto III and lamented as the root of papal worldliness by the poet Dante Alighieri. In the 15th century renewed philological expertise proved the document a forgery. The Donation of Constantine (Latin, Constitutum Donatio Constantini or Constitutum domini Constantini imperatoris) is a forged Roman imperial edict devised probably between 750 and 850. ... Silvester I (or Sylvester) was pope from January 314 to December 31, 335, succeeding Pope Miltiades. ... For the malady found in the Hebrew Bible, see the article Tzaraath. ... The current Pope is Benedict XVI (born Joseph Alois Ratzinger), who was elected at the age of 78 on 19 April 2005. ... The Donation of Constantine (Latin, Constitutum Donatio Constantini or Constitutum domini Constantini imperatoris) is a forged Roman imperial edict devised probably between 750 and 850. ... City motto: Senatus Populusque Romanus – SPQR (The Senate and the People of Rome) Founded 21 April 753 BC (mythical), early 1st millennium BC (archaeological) Region Latium Area  - City Proper  1285 km² Population  - City (2004)  - Metropolitan  - Density (city proper) 2,553,873 almost 4,300,000 1. ... Occident has a number of meanings. ... The cathedral Notre Dame de Paris, a significant architectural contribution of the High Middle Ages. ... By the expression temporal power is commonly indicated the political and governmental activity of the Popes of the Roman Catholic Church, as distinguished from their spiritual and pastoral activity (also called eternal power). ... Otto III in a medieval manuscript Otto III (980 – January 23, 1002, Paterno, Italy) was the fourth ruler of the Saxon or Ottonian dynasty. ... Dante in a fresco series of famous men by Andrea del Castagno, ca. ...


Constantine in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia

Because of his fame and his being proclaimed Emperor on Great Britain, Constantine was later also considered a British King. In the 11th century, the English writer Geoffrey of Monmouth published a fictional work called Historia Regum Britanniae, in which he narrates the supposed history of the Britons and their kings from the Trojan War to King Arthur and the Anglo-Saxon conquest. In this work, Geoffrey claimed that Constantine's mother Helena was actually the daughter of "King Cole", the mythical King of the Britons and eponymous founder of Colchester. A daughter for King Cole had not previously figured in the lore, at least not as it has survived in writing, and this pedigree is likely to reflect Geoffrey's desire to create a continuous line of regal descent. It was indecorous, Geoffrey considered, that a king might have less-than-noble ancestors. Monmouth also said that Constantine was proclaimed "King of the Britons" at York, rather than Roman Emperor. The English are an ethnic group originating in the lowlands of Great Britain and are descendent primarily from the Anglo-Saxons, the Celts with minor influences from the Scandanavians and other groups. ... Geoffrey of Monmouth (c. ... Geoffrey of Monmouths Historia Regum Britanniæ (English: The History of the Kings of Britain) was written around 1136. ... This article is about the mythological Greek war. ... King Arthur is an important figure in the mythology of Great Britain, where he appears as the ideal of kingship in both war and peace. ... The famous parade helmet found at Sutton Hoo, probably belonging to King Raedwald of East Anglia circa 625. ... For other uses, see King Cole (disambiguation). ... The term Briton may have the following meanings: in a historical context: an inhabitant of Great Britain in pre-Roman times a descendant of Britons during a later period (e. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... A legendary king of Celtic Britain, about all that can be said about Old King Cole with any certainty is that: Old King Cole in an illustration by Maxfield Parrish, 1909. ... The term King of the Britons refers to the legendary kings of Celtic Great Britain as established by such pseudo-historical authors as Nennius, Gildas, and predominantly Geoffrey of Monmouth. ... Roman Emperor is the term historians use to refer to rulers of the Roman Empire, after the epoch conventionally named the Roman Republic. ...


Notes

  1. ^ In (Latin Constantine's official imperial title was IMPERATOR CAESAR FLAVIVS CONSTANTINVS PIVS FELIX INVICTVS AVGVSTVS, Imperator Caesar Flavius Constantine Augustus, the pious, the fortunate, the undefeated. After 312, he added MAXIMVS ("the greatest"), and after 325 replaced invictus ("undefeated") with VICTOR, as invictus reminded of Sol Invictus, the Sun God.
  2. ^ The Eastern Catholic Churches of Byzantine rite consider Constantine a saint, while he is not included in the Roman Martyrology of the Latin Church.
  3. ^ See article on the Constantine Conspiracy and Constantinian shift.
  4. ^ MacMullen, 1969
  5. ^ MacMullen, 1969
  6. ^ In this period infant baptism had not yet become a matter of routine in the west (although many were, it was initially only done in times of emergency, and it was seen more as a promise of future submission to Christianity than a deliberate choice to be Christian). Adults who voluntarily submitted to baptisim made a clear statement of their beliefs placing them safely among the redeemed. Some waited to old age or death for various reasons, creating tensions between Churchmen who encouraged their audience to submit and those who waivered. See Thomas M. Finn (1992), Early Christian Baptism and the Catechumenate: East and West Syria. See also Philip Rousseau (1999). "Baptism", in Late Antiquity: A Guide to the Post Classical World, ed. Peter Brown.
  7. ^ MacMullen 1969; New Catholic Encyclopedia, 1908; Theodosian Code.

Latin was the language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ... Coin of Emperor Probus, circa 280, with Sol Invictus riding a quadriga, with legend SOLI INVICTO, to the undefeated Sun. Sol Invictus (the unconquered sun) or, more fully, Deus Sol Invictus (the unconquered sun god) was a religious title applied to three distinct divinities during the later Roman Empire. ... The term Eastern Rites may refer to the liturgical rites used by many ancient Christian Churches of Eastern Europe and the Middle East that, while being part of the Roman Catholic Church, are distinct from the Latin Rite or Western Church. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Sculpture of Constantine I outside York Minster, England. ... There have been several people named Peter Brown. ...

See also

Ammianus Marcellinus is a Roman historian who wrote during Late Antiquity. ... The Arch of Constantine seen from the Colosseum The arch seen from Via Triumphalis Detail of the arch (southern side, left) The Arch of Constantine is a triumphal arch in Rome, situated between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. ... Arc de Triomphe, Paris The Gateway of India, Mumbai, India A triumphal arch is a structure in the shape of a monumental archway, usually built to celebrate a victory in war. ... Combatants Constantinian forces Maxentian forces Commanders Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius† Strength ~50000 men ~75000-120000 men Casualties Unknown Unknown The Battle of Milvian Bridge took place on October 28, 312 between the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Maxentius. ... Sculpture of Constantine I outside York Minster, England. ... The Donation of Constantine (Latin, Constitutum Donatio Constantini or Constitutum domini Constantini imperatoris) is a forged Roman imperial edict devised probably between 750 and 850. ... The Donatists (founded by the Berber Christian Donatus Magnus) were followers of a belief considered a heresy by the broader Catholic community. ...

External links

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Wikimedia Commons logo by Reid Beels The Wikimedia Commons (also called Commons or Wikicommons) is a repository of free content images, sound and other multimedia files. ... The Stony Brook School is located in Stony Brook, Long Island, New York. ... 1913 advertisement for the 11th edition, with the slogan When in doubt — look it up in the Encyclopædia Britannica The Encyclopædia Britannica (properly spelled with æ, the ae-ligature) was first published in 1768–1771 as The Britannica was an important early English-language general encyclopedia and is still...

References and further reading

  • Ancient History
  • Chuvin, Pierre, B. A. Archer, translator, A Chronicle of the Last Pagans, Harvard, 1990. ISBN 0-674-12970-9
  • Dodds, Eric Robertson, The Greeks and the Irrational, University of California, 1964.
  • Dodds, Eric Robertson, Pagan and Christian in an Age of Anxiety: Some Aspects of the Religious Experience from Marcus Aurelius to Constantine, Cambridge, 1965.
  • Jones, A.H.M., Constantine and the Conversion of Europe, Macmillan, 1949.

The Association of Ancient Historians has honored Ramsay MacMullen as being the finest ancient historian of the Roman Empire in our time. Some may find him difficult, he speaks the language of the professional scholar, but reading his works is certainly worth the time and effort. Ancient history is the study of significant cultural and political events from the beginning of human history until the Early Middle Ages. ... Eric Robertson Dodds (26 July 1893 - 8 April 1973) was a British classical scholar. ...

  • MacMullen, Ramsay, Constantine, Dial Press, 1969.
  • MacMullen, Ramsay, Christianizing the Roman Empire A.D. 100-400, Yale, 1984.
  • MacMullen, Ramsay, Changes in the Roman Empire: Essays in the Ordinary, Princeton, 1990.
  • MacMullen, Ramsay, Enemies of the Roman Order: Treason, Unrest, and Alienation, Harvard, 1966.
  • Odahl, Charles Matson, Constantine and the Christian Empire, Routledge, 2004.
  • Wilken, Robert L., Christians As the Romans Saw Them, Yale, 1984
  • Eusebius of Caesarea, The Life of the blessed Emperor Constantine in four books from 306 to 337.
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica 1911: Constantine
  • Lactantius, (240-320) Of the Manner the in Which the Persecutors Died,
  • "Constantine the Great", by Charles G. Herbermann and Georg Grupp. The Catholic Encyclopedia (1908)
  • "Donatists", by John Chapman. The Catholic Encyclopedia (1909)
  • Sources on the Antonine Plague
  • Vlassis R. Rassias, Es Edafos Ferein, 2nd edition, Athens, 2000, ISBN 960-7748-20-4
Preceded by:
Constantius Chlorus
Roman Emperor
306–337
with Galerius, Licinius and Maximinus Daia
Succeeded by:
Constantius II,
Constantine II
and Constans

The January 1920 issue of the Dial. ... Eusebius of Caesarea Eusebius of Caesarea (~275 – May 30, 339) (often called Eusebius Pamphili, Eusebius [the friend] of Pamphilus) was a bishop of Caesarea in Palestine and is often referred to as the father of church history because of his work in recording the history of the early Christian church. ... Lucius Caelius (or Caecilius?) Firmianus Lactantius was an early Christian author who wrote in Latin (c. ... Charles George Herbermann (1840-1916) was born near Münster, Westphalia, Prussia, came to the United States in 1851, and seven years later graduated at College of St. ... Claudius Galenus of Pergamum (129-200 AD), better known in English as Galen, was an ancient Greek physician. ... Marcus Cornelius Fronto (c. ... On the reverse of this argenteus struck in Antioch under Constantius Chlorus, the tetrarcs are sacrificing to celebrate a victory against the Sarmatians. ... Roman Emperor is the term historians use to refer to rulers of the Roman Empire, after the epoch conventionally named the Roman Republic. ... Galerius on a coin Galerius Maximianus (c. ... As of Licinius Aureus of Licinius, celebrating his tenth year of reign and the fifth year of his son Licinius. ... Maximinus denarius Gaius Valerius Galerius Maximinus (20 November 270? - July/August, 313) Roman emperor from AD 308 to 313, was originally an Illyrian shepherd named Daia. ... Constantius II coin, celebrating the 15th year of reign. ... Constantine II as caesar. ... Bronze coin bearing the profile of Constans Flavius Julius Constans (320 - January 18, 350), was a Roman Emperor who ruled from 337 to 350. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Constantine I (emperor) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2370 words)
Constantine is best remembered in modern times for the Edict of Milan in 313 and the Council of Nicaea in 325, which fully legalized and then legitimized Christianity in the Empire for the first time.
Constantine managed to be at his deathbed in Eboracum (York) of Roman Britain, where the loyal general Crocus, of Alamannic descent, and the troops loyal to his father's memory proclaimed him an Augustus ("Emperor").
Constantine was also known for being ruthless with his political enemies, deposing the Eastern Roman Emperor Licinius, his brother-in-law, by strangulation in 325 even though he had publicly promised not to execute him upon Licinius' surrender in 324.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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