Constantine (ca. 272–337 CE)

Constantine I, also known as Constantine the Great, ruled the Roman Empire in the early fourth century CE. He served as Roman emperor from 306 until his death in 337 and was sole emperor from 324 to 337 CE. Constantine is best known for ending the persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire, legalizing the Christian religion, and converting to Christianity himself, becoming the first Christian Roman emperor.

Constantine was born around 272 CE in the city of Naissus (Niš, Serbia). His father, Constantius, was the governor of Dalmatia under Emperor Diocletian. In 285, Diocletian split the Roman Empire in two; although it was still considered one political entity, Diocletian ruled in the east, from Nicomedia (Izmit, Turkey), and Maximian became co-emperor in the west, from ...

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