"Lec 3 - Constantine and the Early Church"The Early Middle Ages, 284--1000 (HIST 210) Professor Freedman examines how Christianity came to be the official religion of the Roman Empire. This process began seriously in 312, when the emperor Constantine converted after a divinely inspired victory at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge. Constantine's conversion would have seemed foolish as a political strategy since Christianity represented a completely different system of values from that of the Roman state, but not only did it prove to be a brilliant storke in aid of Constantine's quest for power, it fundamentally changed the character of the Empire and that of the early Church. Constantine also moved his capitol to a new city he founded in the East, named Constantinople, opening the possibility of a Roman Empire without Rome. Professor Freedman ends the lecture with a comparison of Diocletian and Constantine. 00:00 - Chapter 1. Introduction 07:03 - Chapter 2. Constantine's Rise to Power 10:12 - Chapter 3. The Battle of the Milvian Bridge and Constantine's Conversion 17:01 - Chapter 4. Constantine as a Christian Emperor 23:50 - Chapter 5. The City of Constantinople 31:32 - Chapter 6. Constantine intervenes in Church Doctrine 39:38 - Chapter 7. Constantine and Diocletian Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://oyc.yale.edu This course was recorded in Fall 2011.
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