Rome and the Christian Church (04:47)
Due to the deaths of Paul and Jesus in the Roman Empire, the Romans were continually in conflict with early Christianity. Jonathan Phillips will investigate the relationship between the pagan Roman Empire and the ancient Christian Church.
Christian Martyrdom (06:44)
Roman imperial authorities decided Christianity was illegal and any person proved to be a Christian would be executed. The Cult of Martyrs was important to the ideology of the early church in Rome. In Carthage, Perpetua converted to Christianity; she was imprisoned and killed.
Roman Political Executions (08:53)
Organizers of ritualistic executions had to be creative to keep crowds entertained. Phillips travels to the Colosseum of El Djem. Perpetua, Felicity, and other Christians were killed in the Carthage arena as political prisoners; Perpetua kept a diary.
Sacrificing to the Roman Gods (08:55)
During the third century, the Roman Empire was constantly at war with the Goths, the Persian Empire, and other nations. Unrest in Rome changed the imperial attitude toward Christians. Roman leaders believed Christians were angering the gods and causing the turmoil of the nation.
Roman and Valerian Persecutions (05:03)
During the persecution of Christians by Imperial Roman pagans, some Christians lapsed from their faith. Saint Cyprian had fled in fear of execution and questioned what to do with lapsed Christians. Emperor Valerian set out to persecute and destroy the church.
Popular Roman Cults (03:21)
The cult of Mithraism rapidly spread throughout Rome. Members worshiped the god Mithras; the central image of its mythology was Mithras killing a sacred bull. Religious rituals were secret and held in hidden, underground temples.
Jupiter: Head of the Tetrarchy (09:57)
Diocletian became Roman Emperor and was responsible for the great persecution of Christians in Rome. He saved Rome by splitting the leadership into a Tetrarchy; he remained as the head ruler.
Future Emperor Constantine (04:19)
Emperor Galerius was responsible for many Christian deaths. On his deathbed, he created a new law allowing Christians to worship as they pleased. The persecution of the Christians was too late to stop the expansion of the new religion.
Credits: Pagans and the Cult of Martyrs (01:09)
Credits: Pagans and the Cult of Martyrs
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