Tag Archives: Constantine

#353 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine and the Church

The legacy of Constantine continues to effect different understandings of the history of the Church. For some, Constantine is the model Christian ruler. For others, Constantine corrupted the Christianity. In this episode, we will look at Constantine’s legacy in terms of the Church’s relation to the State and the treatment of those deemed outside the Church.

Links:

Image of Statue of Constantine by Jean-Christophe Benoist

Section of Lactantius’ “Divine Institutes” on forebearance.

Elizabeth DePalma Digeser, “Lactantius, Porphyry, and the Debate over Religious Toleration”, The Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. 88, 1988, pp. 129-146.

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#353 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine and the Church

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#352 – A History of the Catholic Church – Anathematizations and Glorifications

In his final years, Constantine continues to have a profound effect on the Church and the Trinitarian Controversy moves in a new direction with the death of Arius. We also look at the development of the Canonical Scriptures and the importance of the Roman Army on the expansion of Christianity.

Links:

Image of Raphael’s Baptism of Constantine.

Information on Marcellus of Ancyra

Icon showing death of Arius

Eusebius and Athanasius on the Scriptures

Lead tank used by Roman army for baptisms

Images of the Church of the Holy Apostles can be found here and here.

Apotheosis of Constantine

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#352 – A History of the Catholic Church – Anathematizations and Glorifications

#351 – A History of the Catholic Church – Nicenes and Eusebians

The Council of Nicaea did not resolve the controversy over the relationship between the Father and the Son, despite the wishes of Constantine. Indeed, as theology and politics and personalities become more intertwined, the Trinitarian Controversy becomes more intense.

Links:

Image of Constantine burning Arius’ books.

Timothy Barnes, “The Exile and Recalls of Arius”, Journal of Theological Studies, Vol. 60, No. 1, April 2009, 109-129.

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#351 – A History of the Catholic Church – Nicenes and Eusebians

#346 – A History of the Catholic Church – Saint Peter’s and the Holy Sepulchre

Constantine’s devotion to Christ and the Saints will inspire him to build churches at important sites of Christian pilgrimage most significantly at the reputed site of the tomb of Saint Peter in Rome and the tomb of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem. In turn, these pilgrimage site will play a powerful role in influencing the faith throughout the Roman Empire.

Links:

Image of the Constantinian Saint Peter’s Basilica

CONSTANTINIAN SAINT PETER’S BASILICA

Plans showing overlap of Nero’s Circus, Old Saint Peter’s and the Present Saint Peter’s Basilica
Images of architectural work under Saint Peter’s Basilica

Images of the exterior of the basilica can be found here
Interior of Old Saint Peter’s Basilica and here.

Video tour through 3-D reconstruction of Old Saint Peter’s Basilica
Rutika Parulkar and Shreyas Gavande, “The Making of Saint Peter’s Basilica” – pp. 4-8 have nice diagrams on the transformation of Vatican from cemetery to basilica and the relationship of basilica to important tombs underneath.
Several good images of Old Saint Peter’s Basilica

OTHER CONSTANTINIAN CHURCHES IN ROME
Isometric Reconstruction of Saint Laurence Outside the Walls in 330 AD

CHURCH OF THE HOLY SEPULCHRE

Exterior of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Interior Plan of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and here and here.

Church of the Nativity and here.

Anonymous Pilgrim of Bordeaux
The Pilgrim Egeria

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#346 – A History of the Catholic Church – Saint Peter’s and the Holy Sepulchre

#345 – A History of the Catholic Church – The First Christian Basilica

The promotion of Christianity under Constantine brought with it a rapidly growing Christian population and a need for new places of worship. Christians will look to the model of the imperial basilica for their new churches, but not without modifying them to meet their needs. In turn the new basilicas, beginning with Saint John Lateran, will influence the way the Christians lived and experienced their faith.

Links:

Image of Saint John Lateran as it is today by Livioandronico2013

BACKGROUND
Map of Rome’s Titular Churches
Catacomb church of Saint Agnes Outside the Walls

IMPERIAL BASILICAS

Plan and images of the Basilica Ulpia of Emperor Trajan
Plan and images of Constantine’s Basilica at Trier can be found here, here, and here

SAINT JOHN LATERAN
Plan of Saint John Lateran
Comparison of old and new Saint John Lateran
Isometric reconstruction of Old Saint John Lateran

David Tyler Thayer, “The Lateran Baptistery: Memory, Space, and Baptism” includes many images and diagrams of the Lateran Baptistery.

GENERAL
Bernard Dick has a good article with nice images of Constantine’s churches

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#345 – A History of the Catholic Church – The First Christian Basilica

#344 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Illustres

In response to the problems of Arius, Meletius, and Paul of Samosata; the bishops enact new canonical legislation. The Council of Nicaea comes to an end and the bishops find themselves having gone from persecuted to powerful in the Roman Empire.

Links:

Image of fresco of Council of Nicaea in the Sistine Chapel

Canons of the Council of Nicaea

Map of diocesan division of the Roman Empire under Constantine

Herbert Norris’ “Church Vestments: Their Origin and Development” – contains many images of early church vestments and shows their relationship to Roman dress of the same time.

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#344 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Illustres

#343 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Nicene Creed

The Christian bishops at Nicaea strive to resolve the Arian Controversy as well as other conflicts within the Church in order to fulfill Constantine’s desires for unity and peace.

Links:

Image of Constantine and Bishops holding Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed of 381

Creed of Eusebius of Caesarea

The Nicene Creed

Letter of Eusebius of Caeasarea regarding the Nicene Creed

Letter of Council of Nicaea to Alexandria regarding Meletians and dating of Easter

Letter of Constantine regarding dating of Easter

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#343 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Nicene Creed

#342 – A History Catholic of the Catholic Church – The First Ecumenical Council

As the conflict between Arius and Alexander grows larger, bishops throughout the Eastern Empire choose sides. Constantine decides to summon bishops from throughout the Roman Empire in the hopes of establishing peace.

Links:

Image of Icon of the First Council of Nicaea. This icon shows Arius in brown, without the halo. The figure facing him is possibly Alexander of Alexandria. Constantine is shown wearing a crown.

Constantine’s letter to Arius and Alexander seeking peace

Constantine’s letter summoning the bishops to Nicaea

Documents relating to the 325 Synod of Antioch

Icons of Saint Nicholas slapping Arius

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#342 – A History of the Catholic Church – The First Ecumenical Council

#340 – A History of the Catholic Church – New Rome

After an evaluation of Constantine’s Christianity, we look at the establishment of Constantinople and review earlier theological debates to prepare ourselves for the outbreak of the Arian Controversy.

Links:

Image of Mosaic of Constantine presenting Constantinople to Mary and Jesus

Constantine’s “Oration to the Saints”

Coins of Constantine from 312 and 318 showing Sol Invictus

Coins of Constantine from 315 showing the Chi Rho on the Constantine’s helm and from 327 showing the labarum

Map of Constantinople showing early walls of Septimus Severus and how Constantine expanded the size of the city. The map also shows Hagia Irene, where Constantine had the liturgy dedicating Constantinople, and Holy Apostles where Constantine will be buried.

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#340 – A History of the Catholic Church – New Rome

#339 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine Stands Alone

Constantine continues to struggle with the Donatists and Christian persecutes Christian. As he tries to make peace among the Christians of the West, tensions with his co-emperor Licinius break out into civil war.

Links:

Image of Peter Paul Reubens’ “The Battle of Constantine and Licinius

The Spread of Christianity to 325.

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#339 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine Stands Alone