By Emperor of Rome Theodosius I; Emperor of Rome Theodosius I; Freeman, Charles
Examines the pivotal ways that Theodosius's decree mandating a Christian orthodoxy ended debates concerning the nature of God, exploring the explanations why Theodosius's function was once made to seem as a consensual ruling via the Council of Constantinople.
summary: Examines the pivotal ways that Theodosius's decree mandating a Christian orthodoxy ended debates concerning the nature of God, exploring the explanations why Theodosius's function was once made to seem as a consensual ruling via the Council of Constantinople
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Extra info for A.D. 381 : heretics, pagans, and the dawn of the monotheistic state
In his sonorous Oration in Praise of Constantine, delivered at Constantinople in 336 to mark the end of Constantine’s thirtieth year of rule, Eusebius develops the theme that Constantine is God’s viceregent on earth, mortal perhaps but enveloped in a supernatural aura as the result of the close friendship and support of his creator. 3 This is very much an Old Testament conception. In the Hebrew scriptures, the Messiah himself is envisaged as a warror king anointed as such by God. Themistius was able to work within this tradition, and he developed the idea that the prosperity and good order of the empire under Theodosius were due to divine support.
Strictly speaking, however, eastern and western Trinities remained distinct. The most important western work on the Trinity, Augustine’s De Trinitate, owed nothing to Greek theology. ‘Paganism’ is another term that is difficult to use. Historians normally talk of three distinct religious groups for this period - Christians, Jews and pagans. Paganism includes belief not only in the ancient gods of Greece and Rome and the plethora of other religious movements that are to be found in the late empire, but in all its major philosophies in so far as they were neither Jewish nor Christian.
The land routes were relatively secure; those across the Mediterranean less so as winds and currents varied. In the winter the weather was so unstable that shipping virtually came to a halt. As a result an emperor could never be sure when orders sent by sea might arrive, if at all. Studies of voyages between Rome and the wealthy province of Egypt show that they varied in length between 25 and 135 days. Very often an emperor could not have an accurate picture of an uprising or a raid over the border until it was over, and so he was very dependent on the initiative of his local officials.