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HIST 218 (42)


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HIST 218
Richard Greenfield

• Constantine o 324-337 o His father died in 306 which is when he theoretically became an emperor, but it wasn't until 324 that he officially took office o Had Crispus executed in 326 o Helena accused Fausta o Constant campaigns by Constantine o Peac e except on frontiers o Consoloidation and development of Diocletian's reforms o Setting patterns for next two centuries o Constantine Establishes • Absolute imperial authority • Revamped administration run by emperor, and his "party" (the Christians) o Economy in which prices and people are fixed o Constantine: The father of Byzantium • After Constantius (Constantine's son) no one can remember a time before the Constantine dynasty o Founds Constantinople on the old site of Byzantium o And he establishes Christianity the preferred" religion of the old roman world o Two things Constantine did that changed the World • Founded city of Constantinople at old Byzantium, on the Bosporos  Constantinople: the New Rome  Had to include everything that was best about Rome; baths, markets, shops, housing, military, etc • Made Christianity the preferred religion of the Roman World • Christianity abused by traditionalist 'conservative' leaders; used by innovative 'modernist' leaders in 3rd cent • Christianity in the 4thCent o Had a fairly clear cor belief, but fuzzy beyond that o Lack of uniformity o Inherited Judaic ideas of creation, God, world and people o Humanity was fallen, liable to sin in ignorance o There's an enormous variety of simliar, competing beliefs and ideas in the East Roman world: encompassed in what we now call "gnosticism" -
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