Laws Ending Persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire
(311 and 313)Commentary by Oliver Nicholson, University of Minnesota
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The process by which Christianity came to occupy the commanding heights of the Roman mind was long, complex, and gradual. A crucial phase in this evolution was marked by two laws responsible for bringing to a final end the Great Persecution (303–313 CE) of the Christian Church in the Roman Empire. Persecution had already ceased in the western half of the empire in 306 CE. The Edict of Galerius, issued in the spring of 311, was intended to end persecution in the eastern half. However,...
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