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date: 06 July 2020

Constantia, half-sister of Constantine and wife of Licinius

Late antique sources remember Flavia Iulia Constantia,1 conventionally for her loyalty to her imperial relatives, both by birth and by marriage, and, more innovatively, for her Christian patronage, a late antique female imperial activity emerging with the women of the Constantinian dynasty. While her stepmother Helena’s pilgrimage to the Holy Land and her niece Constantina’s devotion to the martyr Agnes initiated an association of late Roman imperial women with Christian popular piety, Constantia is recorded, not always favourably, as taking and giving advice on Christian theological doctrine. As such, her case foreshadows the keen interest later imperial women, particularly among the Theodosian dynasty, took in theological debate and the politics surrounding it. This is not surprising, as among our main sources on Constantia are the 5th-century church historians who wrote under the influence of the Theodosian court and will have found this activity noteworthy. Nonetheless, given the usually scant evidence on imperial women of the 4th century, the comparatively substantial written record on Constantia is remarkable. Several attempts have also been made to identify Constantia’s portrait in contemporary material culture, including paintings from the ceiling of Constantine’s palace in Trier, the mosaic floor in the cathedral of Aquileia, a medallion preserved at the Musée Dobrée in Nantes, and two marble busts now at Schloss Adolphseck and originally from the Vatican Gardens. With the exception of her coin portrait discussed below, none of these is, however, now believed to represent Constantia.

Constantia was born to Constantius Chlorus and Theodora, daughter of Maximian,2 as one of six children.3 It cannot be established with certainty how her age related to that of her siblings. She must have been born after either 289 or 293—depending on the year to which the marriage of her parents can be dated4—and it is unlikely that she was born much later than 300 because she must have been of the customary Roman age of marriage (twelve years or over) in 313.5 Regarding Constantia’s residence during her childhood, we can only speculate, based on the movements of her father Constantius, who seems to have spent much time in Trier during the period 293–306, but we cannot be sure that imperial children necessarily lived in the same place as their parents.6 Nothing is known of the whereabouts of Constantia, or that of her mother and siblings, immediately after the death of Constantius in 306, and the first secure location we have for Constantia is the place of her wedding, Milan, in 313. She was under her older half-brother Constantine’s influence in late 311 or early 312, then based in Gaul, and possibly at Trier, when he betrothed her to Valerius Licinianus Licinius as a way to confirm an alliance against his rival to imperial succession, Constantia’s maternal uncle Maxentius. Marriages had long been a method of sealing political pacts during the tetrarchy, as shown also by the marriage of Constantia’s parents. The engagement was publicly advertised and threatened Licinius’s fellow tetrarch Maximinus Daia enough for him to seek partnership with Maxentius.7 According to Roman law, their father’s death had left Constantine’s half-siblings independent in the technical legal sense, although those under age, and in any case the girls, still needed a legal guardian.8 Constantia’s betrothal to Licinius shows that at this point, even before Constantine had eliminated Maxentius, they (or more likely their mother) seem to have accepted him as the leader of their family.

In February 313 Constantia opened a new chapter in her life when she married Licinius, almost twice her age, in Milan, on occasion of the famous meeting he had with Constantine in that city to plan for transition from tetrarchy to diarchy.9 In the Life of Constantine, Eusebius makes a point of mentioning Licinius’s association with Constantine’s ancient imperial ancestry through this union.10 It certainly must have appealed to Licinius that Constantia, in fact unlike Constantine, had imperial ancestry on both her paternal and maternal sides, which made her a valuable but also dangerous asset to Constantine’s imperial strategies. The union with a granddaughter of Maximian provided Licinius with an imperial connection similar to that Constantine had through his marriage to Fausta, Maximian’s daughter. After the wedding, Licinius “returned to Illyricum” (ad Illyricum reverso),11 and Constantia accompanied him and settled at Sirmium in Pannonia Inferior. It was from Sirmium that, after civil war with Constantine broke out in 316 and Licinius was defeated at Cibalae in Pannonia, he fled to Dacia, his native land, with Constantia and a son.12 This information seems to indicate that in the meantime Constantia had given birth at Sirmium. In fact, on March 1, 317, after the two emperors had settled on peace again, a twenty-month-old child called Licinianus, clearly referenced as both Licinius’s and Constantia’s son, was appointed Caesar at Serdica (at the same time as Constantine’s sons Crispus and Constantine), suggesting that Constantia’s son had been born in the summer of 315.13 Based on an imperial law Constantine issued in 336 on illegitimate children, which demoted a “son of Licinianus” from the “highest dignity” (culmen dignitatis) to his “original status at birth” (ad suae originis primordia), some doubts have been raised about whether Constantia was the biological mother of Licinius’s child.14 The law implies that the mother of the “son of Licinianus” had been of low birth or slave status. This could mean that between 313 and 317 either Constantia had adopted an illegitimate child of Licinius, who was then made Caesar,15 or that the individual in the law was no relation to Licinius the emperor,16 but simply someone who had usurped a social rank beyond his status, or, most likely, that the son of Licinius mentioned in the law was a half-brother of Constantia’s son Licinianus Caesar, whom other sources reported to have been killed in 326.17 An inscription celebrating Licinianus Caesar as the son of Constantine’s sister (Constantini maximi et perpetui Aug(usti) soror[i]s filio) was erected in Alba Helviorum in Gallia Narbonensis—that is, Constantine’s territory—between 317 and 324 (Figure 1).18

Constantia, half-sister of Constantine and wife of Licinius

Figure 1. CIL XVII.2 183a.

Photo courtesy Epigraphik-Datenbank Clauss/Slaby.

By most accounts then, Constantia was a young mother in 317, but she was also on the move again. After his second defeat by Constantine and the peace settlement, Licinius had lost control over the Balkan region (with the exception of Thrace) and retreated to the East.19 It was perhaps at this point that Constantia settled at Nicomedia in Bithynia, the tetrarchs’ capital of the East. Indications that she resided here for some years may be that her son’s tutor was the rhetorician Flavius Optatus, possibly a native of Bithynia,20 and her later attested acquaintance with Eusebius, the influential bishop of Nicomedia, formerly bishop of Berytus, who took over the see in 318.21 During these years of tensions between her husband and her half-brother, Constantia always remained at the side of Licinius. Both men therefore seem to have seen the continuity of the marriage as crucial to the politics of their relationship. In 324, after animosities had broken out again and Licinius had been decisively defeated at Chrysopolis and retreated to Nicomedia, Constantia successfully pleaded for his life with Constantine, personally visiting the emperor in his camp.22 As a consequence, Licinius was allowed to retire to Thessalonika, where nonetheless Constantine had him killed around a year later. Constantia’s main interest may have been to save the life of her son, but the sources that report the incident in more detail, the Anonymus Valesianus (also called Origo Constantini) and Zosimus, focus on her intervention for Licinius and his subsequent death. While the Anonymus Valesianus to some extent sympathized with Constantine’s predicament of having a retired emperor and hence continuing rival on his hands, Zosimus dwelled on Constantine’s breaking his promise to his sister, who, by all accounts, had acted exactly in the way expected of a married woman of her time: as a peace weaver or “hinge figure” between families and ready to ceremonially perform as such.23 The detail that Constantine had been morally upstaged by a woman was important to Zosimus’s anti-Constantinian narrative.24

As a widow, Constantia may have lived at Constantine’s court, as we shall see further below, even though not much later her son was killed as well, perhaps during the mysterious family crisis that hit the Constantinian dynasty in 326 and also claimed the lives of Crispus, Constantine’s eldest son, and Fausta, his wife.25 Constantine now bestowed a number of honours on his half-sister. Maiuma, the port of the city of Gaza in Palestine, was renamed Constantia, although this was perhaps a posthumous distinction.26 Most importantly, probably in 326–327,27 Constantine issued a bronze follis type with her portrait and the captions Constantia n(obilissima) f(emina) on the obverse, and Soror Constantini Aug(usti) and Pietas Publica, enclosed by a wreath, on the reverse.28 Constantia is shown as wearing a braid-wreath (Zopfkranz) hairstyle, the main signifier of Constantine’s female family members on coins and statuary (Figure 2).29

Constantia, half-sister of Constantine and wife of Licinius

Figure 2. Bronze follis showing Constantia and with the captions Constantia n(obilissima) f(emina) on the obverse, and Soror Constantini Aug(usti) and Pietas Publica, enclosed by a wreath. RIC VII 015.

Courtesy The Roman Numismatic Gallery.

The coins were struck only at the mint of Constantinople, so the size of the issue must have been very small. If this is true, the production period must also have been very narrow. The denomination suggests that circulation may also have been fairly local.30 In fact, the coin is extremely rare, with only two or perhaps three exemplars known. It is reasonable to suggest, therefore, that the coin type was part of Constantine’s promotion of his victory in Licinius’s former core territory. It may also have been issued after the killing of Licinius junior, to appease a population that had still believed in his legitimate imperial succession.31 The coin was in any case part of a larger Constantinian strategy to make his dynasty more visible after he became sole emperor, which also saw coin types for his mother Helena and his wife Fausta, again with pietas as the central female virtue.32 In this new context, Constantia now carried the title nobilissima femina, a title that also Helena and Fausta had received in 318–319, before becoming augustae in 324, the most prestigious title for imperial women.33 Constantia is also called nob[ilissima femina] on an honorary statue base erected to her in Rome between 326 and 333—again an honour she shared with Helena.34 Constantia’s title was not, as sometimes thought, a demotion, as she had never been made augusta by Licinius, although it may have been used to express her subordination to other Constantinian women, most notably his mother Helena, but also perhaps his wife Fausta, if she was still alive at this point.35 In fact, Constantia’s public profile was much higher after 326 than it had been in the time of Licinius, who, as far as we can tell, seems to have followed tetrarchic tradition of a very male-centred imperial propaganda.36 The exaltation of Constantia, then, was surely meant to reclaim Licinius’s widow, through the commemoration of her bloodline, for the Constantinian family, and quite publicly to sever her links to her (by now executed) family of marriage. It was hence her double imperial ancestry that continued to make her valuable to Constantine and most probably saved her life. This does not exclude that Constantine continued to exploit the soft power that came with the memory of Constantia’s having been the wife of Licinius when he was promoting his rule in the East.

The 5th-century church historians report that Constantine was particularly fond of Constantia, consoling her after the death of her husband and son, looking after her during her last illness, and being present at her deathbed.37 These stories are used to set up Constantia’s unwholesome influence on Constantine in religious affairs and so need not be true, but they suggest that Constantia may have lived in close proximity to Constantine, at least during the last years of her life. More evidence for this is her interference in the decision making at the Council of Nicaea in 325, as reported by the 5th-century heterodox church historian Philostorgius. Philostorgius relates how Constantia encouraged the “Arian” bishops, led by Eusebius of Nicomedia, Theognis of Nicaea, and Maris of Chalcedon, to accept the homoousian formula of the Trinity agreed at the Council (although they refused to condemn Arius).38 This passage is the only reference to Eusebius’s and Constantia’s personal acquaintance. Yet it should be remembered that Constantia probably had arrived at Nicomedia in 317–318, around the same time as Eusebius, who may have sought a transferral to Nicomedia to be in proximity to the newly restored imperial court there.39 We can only imagine Constantia’s experiences in her unfamiliar new surroundings then, still possibly a teenaged mother at the time and Latin-speaking. It is perhaps no surprise that she became close to Eusebius, who in fact may also have been a relative of the Constantinian family.40

It has to remain uncertain whether Constantia identified as a Christian before she came to Nicomedia. Her baptism at the hands of Silvester, bishop of Rome (314-335), at the basilica of St Agnes on the Via Nomentana, as recorded in the Liber pontificalis, is almost certainly unhistorical.41 During her years residing at the eastern capital, however, she seems to have developed a profound interest in the newly tolerated religion. According to a letter Eusebius of Caesarea wrote to Constantia sometime between 313 and 324, when she was still wife of Licinius, she attempted to acquire or even commission an (apparently encaustic) painting of Christ—a wish Eusebius reprimanded, pointing at the impossibility and unorthodoxy of the representation of Christ. The letter is preserved in the Acts of the Second Council of Nicaea in 787, which rehabilitated the veneration of icons suppressed earlier in the 8th century, as well as, in a different and longer version, in the works of the iconodule patriarch of Constantinople, Nikephorus.42 Within the context of the iconoclast controversy, the letter served iconodules as an example that iconoclasts sought authority in the teachings of a heretical bishop (Eusebius is here presented as an “Arian”).43 The historical authenticity of the letter or at least of some parts is debated.44 If it is genuine, it may show that Constantia interpreted Christianity through the lens of a recent convert, expecting to find practices similar to traditional Roman religion (“pagan” veneration of images of gods and heroes is specifically rebuked by Eusebius),45 and that by the time of the Council of Nicaea, she had a long (perhaps somewhat strained) acquaintance with a prominent supporter of the homoiousian solution to the Trinitarian question, even though Eusebius of course eventually also subscribed to the homoousian formula of the council. Notably, Eusebius calls Constantia “pious” in his Life of Constantine.46

Constantine would probably have found his sister’s connections and familiarity with Eastern bishops immensely valuable, and of course they helped him at first to create unity at the Council of Nicaea. Constantia’s relationship with Eusebius of Nicomedia in particular, however, became a problem decades later, after the Nicene triumph and the transformation of Eusebius into an arch-heretic. Given Constantia’s network, it is perhaps no surprise that 5th-century church historians, looking to explain the apparent and to them puzzling inconsistency of Constantine’s dealings with the “Arian” faction and his son Constantius’s homoiousian sympathies, turned to the alleged influence of Constantia on her half-brother and nephew. Sozomen recorded how Constantine in 328 recalled Eusebius of Nicomedia and Theognis of Nicaea from exile, where they had been sent due to their refusal to condemn Arius, because Constantia related to him that a dream had revealed the bishops’ orthodoxy to her.47 Sozomen presents this story with some caution, but elsewhere in his Ecclesiastical History he writes with more confidence about her role in the recall from exile of Arius himself. Versions of the account can also be found in the Ecclesiastical Histories of Rufinus, Socrates, and Theodoret. All of these seem to derive from Gelasius of Caesarea’s lost late 4th-century Ecclesiastical History.48 The story was also known to Jerome, who in a letter dated to 415 numbers Constantia among the female associates of heretics, similar to Simon Magus’s Helena, Montanus’s Priscus and Maximilla, Priscillian’s Galla, and others.49 In a more restrained way, the church historians relate how Constantia was persuaded by an unnamed Arian presbyter (according to Sozomen on instigation by the pro-Arian bishops), who was a member of her household and her intimate confidant, that Arius’s condemnation at Nicaea had been unjust. While she never actively pleaded with Constantine for Arius on these grounds, she commended the presbyter to her brother on her deathbed, at which point he passed into the emperor’s household, where he could repeat his assertions and eventually arrange that Arius and his companion, the deacon Euzoïus, were granted an audience with the emperor that led to their recall. Theodoret spins the tale even further: the same presbyter (in Theodoret’s version without having revealed his Arian credentials to the emperor) was present also at Constantine’s death, and, with no immediate relatives at hand, the emperor entrusted his will to him for delivery to his son Constantius. As a result, the presbyter, together with the will, now passed into Constantius’s household, where he (again on instigation by Eusebius of Nicomedia, Theognis of Nicaea, and now also Theodore of Perinthus) corrupted the new emperor’s mind against the homoousian formula. This line of reasoning, while an obvious fabrication, is nonetheless significant regarding the way Constantia’s role in the unfolding of the Trinitarian controversy was remembered later. It is remarkable how in this story the primary role of imperial women as transmitters of dynastic legitimacy and issue is mirrored and subverted by representing Constantia as a conduit of religious contagion and associated personnel to the next imperial generation. Constantia, as a woman by nature considered gullible, appears as the weak link in the spreading of heresy, although the conveniently anonymous presbyter also served to exonerate her, and her imperial relatives, from having done so willingly or consciously if not entirely innocently. Nonetheless, in a 5th-century context and in the face of a strong female presence at the stationary Constantinopolitan court, Constantia’s example may have served as a critique of a too close overlap between court affairs and ecclesiastical business, and of the role of imperial women as gatekeepers to the emperor.50

The church historians’ accounts also give an indication of the date of Constantia’s death. Rufinus reports that she died after Helena, so possibly after 329.51 However, in the above story about the Arian presbyter, Constantia is reported to have died before Arius was summoned to court and subsequently recalled, an event usually dated to 327–328. At the same time, Sozomen remembers Constantia as being alive in 328, when she pleaded for the recall of Eusebius of Nicomedia and Theognis of Nicaea. Of course, the exact chronology of events was most probably not remembered with precision in the 5th century. Yet, as Timothy Barnes has shown, Arius may have been exiled for a second time in 333 and subsequently rehabilitated in 335.52 If this assumption is correct, it could also have been this second recall that Constantia was later associated with. It is therefore not unreasonable to assume that Constantia died in the early 330s, still probably under forty years of age.

Bibliography

Barnes, Timothy D. “The Letter of Eusebius to Constantia (CPG 3503).” Studia Patristica 46 (2010): 313–317.Find this resource:

Barnes, Timothy D. Constantine: Dynasty, Religion and Power in the Later Roman Empire. Chichester, U.K.: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.Find this resource:

Busch, Anja. Die Frauen der theodosianischen Dynastie: Macht und Repräsentation kaiserlicher Frauen im 5. Jahrhundert. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner, 2013.Find this resource:

Clauss, Manfred. “Die Frauen der diokletianisch-konstantinischen Zeit.” In Die Kaiserinnen Roms von Livia bis Theodora. Edited by Hildegard Temporini, 340–369. Munich: C. H. Beck, 2002.Find this resource:

Drijvers, Jan-Willem. Helena Augusta: The Mother of Constantine the Great and the Legend of her Finding of the True Cross. Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill, 1992.Find this resource:

Gero, Stephen. “The True Image of Christ: Eusebius’ Letter to Constantia Reconsidered.” Journal of Theological Studies, n.s., 32 (1981): 460–470.Find this resource:

Holum, Kenneth G. Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1982.Find this resource:

Longo, Katia. Donne di potere nella tarda antichità: Le Augustae attraverso le immagini monetali. Reggio Calabria: Falzea, 2009.Find this resource:

L’Orange, Hans Peter. Das spätantike Herrscherbild von Diokletian bis zu den Konstantin-Söhnen, 284–361 n. Chr.: Die Bildnisse der Frauen und des Julian, 148–150. Berlin: Gebr. Mann, 1984.Find this resource:

Pauly, A., Wissowa, G., and Kroll, W. Real-Encyclopädie der klassischen Altertumswissenschaft, vol. 4.1. Stuttgart: Metzler, 1900.Find this resource:

Pohlsander, Hans. “Constantia.” Ancient Society 24 (1993): 151–167.Find this resource:

Sode, Claudia, and Speck, Paul. “Ikonoklasmus vor der Zeit? Der Brief des Eusebios von Kaisareia an Kaiserin Konstantia.” Jahrbuch der Österreichischen Byzantinistik 54 (2004): 113–134.Find this resource:

Thümmel, Hans Georg. “Eusebios’ Brief an Kaiserin Konstantia.” Klio 66 (1984): 210–222.Find this resource:

Washington, Belinda. “The Roles of Imperial Women in the Later Roman Empire (AD 306–455).” Diss., University of Edinburgh, 2016.Find this resource:

Notes:

(1.) Her full name is recorded on CIL VI 1153 = Dessau, ILS 711.

(2.) Kenneth G. Holum, Theodosian Empresses: Women and Imperial Dominion in Late Antiquity (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1982); Anja Busch, Die Frauen der theodosianischen Dynastie: Macht und Repräsentation kaiserlicher Frauen im 5. Jahrhundert (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner, 2013).

(3.) For discussion of the material culture see Hans Pohlsander, “Constantia,” Ancient Society 24 (1993): 165–167. For the two marble busts see Hans Peter L’Orange, Das spätantike Herrscherbild von Diokletian bis zu den Konstantin-Söhnen, 284–361 n. Chr. (Berlin: Gebr. Mann, 1984), 148–150. On the Trier fresco see Marise Rose, “The Trier Ceiling: Power and Status on Display in Late Antiquity,” Greece and Rome 53 (2006): 92–109.

(4.) Or possibly his step-daughter; see Timothy D. Barnes, The New Empire of Diocletian and Constantine (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1982), 33–34, for discussion.

(5.) Eutr. 9.22.1.

(6.) For the debate see Timothy D. Barnes, Constantine: Dynasty, Religion and Power in the Later Roman Empire (Chichester, U.K.: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011), 38–41.

(7.) Antti Arjava, Women and Law in Late Antiquity (Oxford: Clarendon, 1996), 32–33. Barnes, Constantine, 42, thinks she was fourth-born and the oldest girl.

(8.) Pohlsander, “Constantia,” 153–154.

(9.) Lactant. De mort. pers. 43.2.45; Zos. 2.17.2.

(10.) Arjava, Women and Law, 112.

(11.) Anon. Val. 5.13; Epit. de Caes. 41.4; Zos. 2.17.2. The marriage is also mentioned, but without location of the wedding, by Eusebius, Hist. eccl. 10.8.3; Eusebius, Vit. Const. 1.50; Aur. Vict., Caes. 41.2; Oros. 7.28.19; Socrates, Hist. eccl. 1.2.8; Sozom., Hist. eccl. 1.7.5; Theodoret, Hist. eccl. 2.3.

(12.) Eusebius, Vit. Const. 1.50.

(13.) Anon. Val. 5.13.

(14.) Anon.Val. 5.17. Note that earlier historians have dated the battle to 314, in which case the son of Licinius mentioned cannot have been Constantia’s son; see Pohlsander, “Constantia,” 155 n. 22. On the redating to 316 see Barnes, Constantine, 17.

(15.) Anon. Val 5.19; Eutr. 10.6.3; Epit. de Caes. 41.4 (mentioning he was twenty months old); Jer., Chron. 317; Oros. 7.28.22.26; Consularia Constantinopolitana s.a. 317; Zos. 2.20.2.

(16.) CTh 4.6.2 (336); see also CTh 4.6.3 (336) where what looks like the same individual is to be punished with forced labour.

(17.) Real-Encyklopädie der klassischen Alterthumswissenschaften, vol. 4.1, s.v. Constantia, 958.

(18.) Simon Corcoran, The Empire of the Tetrarchs: Imperial Pronouncements and Government 284–324 (Oxford: Clarendon, 2000), 291.

(19.) The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire, vol. 1, ed. A. H. M. Jones (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1970), s. v. Licinus 4, 509–510; Judith Evans Grubbs, Law and Family in Late Antiquity: The Emperor Constantine’s Marriage Legislation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), 285–286. On the killing of Constantia’s son see n. 27.

(20.) CIL XVII.2 183a.

(21.) Anon. Val. 5.18.

(22.) Barnes, Constantine, 164; Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire, vol. 1, s. v. Flavius Optatus 3, 650.

(23.) On Eusebius of Nicomedia see Barnes, Constantine, 70; on his relationship with Constantia see n. 37.

(24.) Anon. Val 5.28; Epit. de Caes. 41.7; Zos. 2.28.2, Zonar. 13.1.21.

(25.) Kate Cooper, The Fall of the Roman Household (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2007), 149.

(26.) That Constantine had broken an oath (sacramentum) was also noted by Eutropius and Jerome, but they do not mention his sister: Eutr. 10.6.1; Jer., Chron. 323.

(27.) Eutr. 10.6; Jer., Chron. 325; Oros. 7.28.22.26.

(28.) Eusebius, Vit. Const. 4.38; Socrates, Hist. eccl. 1.18.

(29.) Katia Longo, Donne di potere nella tarda antichità: Le Augustae attraverso le immagini monetali (Reggio Calabria: Falzea, 2009), 56. See Pohlsander, “Constantia,” 163, who dates the coin to between 330 and 333, and after Constantia’s death.

(30.) RIC 7.15; Longo, Donne di potere, 56.

(31.) Kathrin Schade, “Die bildliche Repräsentation der römischen Kaiserin zwischen Prinzipat und Byzanz,” in Grenzen der Macht: Zur Rolle der römischen Kaiserfrauen, eds. Christiane Kunst and Ulrike Riemer (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner, 2000), 43.

(32.) Belinda Washington, “The Roles of Imperial Women in the Later Roman Empire (AD 306–455)” (Diss., University of Edinburgh, 2016), 92.

(33.) Longo, Donne di potere, 111–112.

(34.) Manfred Clauss, “Die Frauen der diokletianisch-konstantinischen Zeit,” in Die Kaiserinnen Roms von Livia bis Theodora, ed. Hildegard Temporini (Munich: C. H. Beck, 2002), 340–369.

(35.) CIL VI 40777 = CIL VI 1153 = Dessau, ILS 711. On Helena’s honorary statues in Rome see Jan Willem Drijvers, Helena Augusta: The Mother of Constantine the Great and the Legend of Her Finding of the True Cross (Leiden: Brill, 1992), 33.

(36.) Real-encyklopädie der klassischen Alterthumswissenschaften, s.v. Constantia. Her title augusta in Eusebius of Caesarea’s letter (see n. 43) is probably an anachronistic 8th-century addition, if it is not simply an epithet without formal titulature.

(37.) Clauss, Die Frauen, 340–369.

(38.) Rufinus, Hist. eccl. 10.12; Socrates, Hist. eccl. 1.25; Sozom., Hist. eccl. 2.27; Theodoret, Hist. eccl. 2.3.

(39.) Philostorgius, Hist. eccl. 1.9.

(40.) Barnes, Constantine, 70.

(41.) Liber pontificalis 34.23: Vita Silvestri.

(42.) Amm. Marc. 22.9.4.

(43.) Hans Georg Thümmel, Die Frühgeschichte der ostkirchlichen Bilderlehre: Texte und Untersuchungen zur Zeit vor dem Ikonoklasmus (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1992), 283–287. The letter, if authentic, should be dated to her marriage with Licinius, as she is addressed as his wife.

(44.) Claudia Sode and Paul Speck, “Ikonoklasmus vor der Zeit? Der Brief des Eusebios von Kaisareia an Kaiserin Konstantia,” Jahrbuch der Österreichischen Byzantinistik 54 (2004): 113–134.

(45.) Timothy D. Barnes, “The Letter of Eusebius to Constantia (CPG 3503),” Studia Patristica 46 (2010): 313–317. For its authenticity see Stephen Gero, “The True Image of Christ: Eusebius’ Letter to Constantia Reconsidered,” Journal of Theological Studies, n.s., 32 (1981): 460–470; and Hans Georg Thümmel, “Eusebios’ Brief an Kaiserin Konstantia,” Klio 66 (1984): 210. Sode and Speck, “Ikonoklasmus, argue it is a forgery.

(46.) Thümmel, “Eusebios’ Brief.”

(47.) Eusebius, Vit. Const. 4.38, in the context of renaming Maiuma to honour its conversion to Christianity.

(48.) Sozom., Hist. eccl. 3.19.3; at 2.27 he also writes that Constantia on her deathbed expressed concerns that Constantine had banished orthodox bishops.

(49.) Rufinus, Hist. eccl. 10.12; Socrates, Hist. eccl. 1.25; Sozom., Hist. eccl. 2.27; Theodoret, Hist. eccl. 2.3; on the tradition from Gelasius of Caesarea see Barnes, Constantine, 220 n. 30.

(50.) Jerome, Ep. 133.4.

(51.) Rufinus, Hist. eccl. 10.12.

(52.) Timothy D. Barnes, “The Exile and Recall of Arius,” Journal of Theological Studies 60 (2009): 109–129.

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