Lived from c. 245 to c. 312 A.D.
Roman Emperor from November 20, 284 to May 1, 305 A.D.
(also known as Constantine I or the Great)
Lived from February 27, 272 to May 22, 337 A.D.
Roman Emperor from 306 to 337 A.D.
After coming to power Constantine wanted to build a 'new Rome' somewhere in the east since that was where the Empire's economic life in the fourth century was centered. He eventually selected a spot on the Bosphorus called Byzantium. Although at the time Byzantium was a small village it soon grew much bigger. One of the primary reasons for selecting this location as the new capital was that, like Rome itself, it was seated on seven hills. This made the 'New Rome' a City of Seven Hills just like its predecessor. After several years of construction the city was officially made the capital of the Empire in 330 A.D.
Byzantium was renamed Constantinople, in honor of the emperor, after his death. In 337 A.D. Constantine II, at the age of twenty-one, became Co-Emperor with his brothers. His reign lasted for only three years.
Constantine is best remembered for the Edict of Milan in 313 A.D. which, for the first time in Roman history, gave imperial favor to Christianity.