Janus' Home

6

Other parts of the works by Eusebius and Lactantius, however biased, must also be used, for there is simply not enough available information to dispense with them entirely.9 This is particularly true in their accounts of Constantine's dream and vision. Lactantius' account of the dream and vision will not be used, for it reads like a confused summary of Eusebius' account.10 Thus, in the discussion of the dream and vision Eusebius' account will be used, and the accuracy of the account itself will be thoroughly discussed as well.

In the matter of numismatic evidence, Grant's advice also seems to be the most prudent. In his account of the conversion, he used the coins produced by Constantine, but he also exercised caution.11

The Conversion of Constantine
During his invasion of Italy in 312, Constantine was faced with a crisis.12 The tyrant of Rome was protected by the walls of Aurelian, and he was equipped with large supplies of food from his territory in North Africa.13 Both Severus and Galerius had failed in their attack on the city, and it seemed that Constantine would do the same.14 To make matters worse, Constantine was outnumbered, for he had left a large force--perhaps as much as three-fourths of his entire army15--to guard the frontier.16


9. Grant, 4.
10. Ibid., 141.
11. See Grant, 9. Grant stresses that such coins may have been produced locally, containing the official ideas of the court but straying from the actual ideas of Constantine in specifics. One must also keep in mind that these coins were one of the most important instruments of imperial propaganda, and as such they declare the official ideas of the Emperor - but not necessarily his personal views.
12. Baynes, 6.
13. Ibid., 6.
14. Ibid., 42.
15. Ibid., 141.
16. Ibid., 6.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18