By Pamela Sharp
Master’s thesis: University of New Mexico, 2010
Abstract: Focusing on Late Antiquity and in particular the fourth century AD, the question of Emperor Constantine’s policy of religious tolerance is examined. Constantine and his times and issues introduce the theme. The sincerity of Constantine’s Christian belief and his relationship to the Church set the background of the debate, along with a look at three influences upon him, Eusebius of Caesarea, Ossius of Cordova, and Lactantius. Examining the atmosphere or climate gives added criteria for determining Constantine’s religious policy. Lactantian views are investigated more fully for his influence on Constantine. Other problems looked at are the controversy over the Edict of Milan, the question of Eusebius’ reliability and whether or not Constantine issued a ban on sacrifice. After exploring these issues, it is concluded that Constantine did maintain a policy of religious tolerance.
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Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Constantine’s Policy of Religious Tolerance: Was It Tolerant Or Not?