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Oromasdes1978's Avatar Jump to comment 99 by Oromasdes1978

JHJ

Constantine was an interesting chap wasn't he - I love the rumour that he once took on a lion and won - no basis or evidence he ever did such a thing, but seriously funny nonetheless!

I thought Constantine had manouvered himself to the emperor position by cleverly knocking out his rivals Maximian and Licinius and then seeing the opportunity of the rising popularity of Christianity decided to make it the religion of the empire. The problem was that Christianity was enormously divided and it needed more cohesion for Constantine's rule to be more effective.

I think you are right when you say he was furthering his own interests with Christianity but I'm not entirely convinced he was a full Christian either, there is something about the way he threw Arius out to exile only to then chuck Athanasius out to have Arius return shortly before he died that makes me suspicious. Plus, he was an enormously clever chap - you can't go through life learning from people like Marcus Aurelius or even his dad Constantinus and not come out of it without a little cunning and political manouvering. Constantine was a good tactical thinker and a risk taker - he saw an advantage in Christianity and went with it.

Then again I could be very wrong.

It is very difficult to tell when you have people like Eusebius of Ceaseria who was the equivalent of Alistair Campbell and as much as his works were interesting, there is no doubt in my mind there was a little embellishment on his part!

I'd have to hunt it down at another time but I think I saw or read something about how Constantine converted to Christianity - according to Eusebius I think - whilst busy killing people in battle - it all seems rather sudden to me - I don't doubt his sincerity in advancing Christianity throught the Roman empire, but I'm still not entirely convinced he was as devout as he is made out to be.

As for the "Pope" title, yes, I was a little wrong there, I think it was more of a title the Council of Alexandria liked to have to make themselves seem more important than they actually were!

Thank you very much, it is a pleasure to swap knowledge - you keep up the good work too!

Sat, 18 Jun 2011 11:04:16 UTC | #639956