The Justice of Constantine: Law, Communication, and Control

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University of Michigan Press, Jul 20, 2012 - History - 295 pages
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As the first Christian emperor of Rome, Constantine the Great has long interested those studying the establishment of Christianity. But Constantine is also notable for his ability to control a sprawling empire and effect major changes. The Justice of Constantine examines Constantine's judicial and administrative legislation and his efforts to maintain control over the imperial bureaucracy, to guarantee the working of Roman justice, and to keep the will of his subjects throughout the Roman Empire.

John Dillon first analyzes the record of Constantine's legislation and its relationship to prior legislation. His initial chapters also serve as an introduction to Roman law and administration in later antiquity. Dillon then considers Constantine's public edicts and internal communications about access to law, trials and procedure, corruption, and punishment for administrative abuses. How imperial officials relied on correspondence with Constantine to resolve legal questions is also considered. A study of Constantine's expedited appellate system, to ensure provincial justice, concludes the book.

Constantine's constitutions reveal much about the Theodosian Code and the laws included in it. Constantine consistently seeks direct sources of reliable information in order to enforce his will. In official correspondence, meanwhile, Constantine strives to maintain control over his officials through punishment; trusted agents; and the cultivation of accountability, rivalry, and suspicion among them.

  

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Contents

Introduction
1
1 The Sources and the Codex Theodosianus
12
2 Formal Characteristics of the Legislation of Constantine
35
3 Changes in Legislation from Diocletian to Constantine
60
4 The Propagation of Justice
90
5 Constantine and the Provincials
119
6 Constantine and the Imperial Bureaucracy
156
Breves Relationes Consultationes
192
8 Appellatio
214
Conclusion
251
Works Cited
259
Index Locorum
277
General Index
285
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

John Dillon is Lecturer in Classics and Ancient History at the University of Exeter.

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