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Imperial Opponents Of Montanism Ca. 324–550 C.E

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Chapter Summary

This chapter identifies the emperors and imperial agents involved in the persecution of Montanism and examines the specific measures taken by the state to force Montanists to convert to emperor-supported 'catholic' Christianity. It first explains the rationale underlying the persecution of Montanists by Constantine and his successors. Then it surveys the general anti-heretical legislation which affected Montanists. Next, the chapter classifies the major types of anti-heretical measures enacted from 325/6 to 398, that is, from the time of Constantine's anti-Montanist legislation to the first specifically anti-Montanist legislation of the later Empire. Further, the chapter discusses all the known specifically anti-Montanist legislation from 398 to 438 issued jointly by the emperors of the Eastern and Western Empires after the Empire had been divided by Theodosius I in 395. Finally, it examines the special case of Justinian I's antiheretical legislation and his action against the Montanists.

Keywords: anti-heretical legislation; anti-Montanist legislation; catholic Christianity; Constantine; imperial agents; Justinian I; Montanism; persecution; Theodosius I



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