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Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Vasilief, A History of the Byzantine Empire

The empire from Constantine the Great to Justinian

The Edict of Milan


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Constantine the GreatAccording to this document the Christians and people of other religions were given full freedom to follow whatever faith they chose. All measures directed against the Christians were declared null and void:

From now on every one of those who have a common wish to observe the Christian worship may freely and unconditionally endeavor to observe the same without any annoyance or disquiet. These things we thought good to signify in the fullest manner to your Carefulness (i.e., the praeses of Bithynia), that you might know that we have given freely and unreservedly to the said Christians authority to practice their worship. And when you perceive that we have made this grant to the said Christians, your Devotion understands that to others also freedom for their own worship and observance is likewise left open and freely granted, as befits the quiet of our times, that every man may have freedom in the practice of whatever worship he has chosen, for it is not our will that aught be diminished from the honor of any worship.  

The document also ordered that private buildings and churches previously confiscated from Christians be restored to them freely and unreservedly.  

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