First English edition of the Nuremberg chronicle: being the Liber chronicarum of Dr. Hartmann Schedel…

Constantine (Constantinus) the Great, born of a humble marriage, son of Constantius (Constancii) the Augustus, was elected king in Britain. And although at this time the common people of Rome were ruled by four emperors, Constantine and Maxentius, sons of the Augusti, and Licinus, and Maximian, new men; yet this Constantine, as a great and mighty man who understood how to succeed in all things he undertook, possessed an ambition to rule the entire world, and he overcame all opponents. The beginning of his reign was comparable with the best and in the end with those ranked in the middle. He was gifted with unlimited strength of mind and body, possessed great military skill and zeal, and was victorious over the Goths. He was devoted to the liberal arts and loved justice. In the 339th Year of the Lord, the Christians, previously oppressed by tyrants, began to take on new life under this emperor. He who loved peace was secure by his grace, and by his mildness Constantine secured the good will and devotion of all mankind. He made decrees annulling superfluous laws and repealing those which were too severe. This all-powerful emperor was so concerned with the preservation of the integrity of Christian life that when he went to war he used no other banner than that which was inscribed with the sign of the cross which he had seen in the heavens and worshipped when he marched his army against Maxentius. And he heard the angels saying, Constantine, by this sign you shall conquer. And this he did, dispersing all the tyrants of the Romans and of all Christian people. This Constantine was influenced by Pope Silvester to prosper and multiply the churches of God with great speed. He offered the popes a diadem set with precious stones; but this was declined by Silvester as unsuited to a spiritual head, for which a white headdress should be sufficient. This Constantine and his son Crispus were baptized by Silvester. While making war against the Parthians he died in a village near Nicomedia in the thirty-first year of his reign at the age of sixty-six. His death was announced by a hairy star of unusual size that appeared for some time, a thing which the Greeks call a comet. And he has earned the right to be spoken of as one among the saints.[Constantine, surnamed "the Great," was Roman emperor from 306-337. He was the eldest son of Constantius Chlorus and Helena, and was born in 272 in upper Moesia. He received training in military matters at an early age, and served with great distinction under Galerius in the Persian war. Galerius, however, became jealous of him and retained him for some time in the East; but Constantine contrived at last to join his father in Gaul just in time to accompany him to Britain on his expedition against the Picts in 306. His father died at York in the same year and Constantine laid claim to his share of the Empire. Galerius, who dreaded a struggle with the legions of the West, acknowledged Constantine as master of the countries beyond the Alps, but with the title of Caesar only. The commencement of Constantine's reign is placed, however, in this year, so he did not receive the title of Augustus until 308. He took up his residence at Treves and governed with justice, beloved by his subjects and feared by the barbarian neighbors. It was not long, however, before he became involved in war with his rivals in the empire. In the same year in which he was acknowledged Caesar (306), Maxentius, son of Maximian, had seized the imperial power at Rome. Constantine entered into a close alliance with Maxentius by marrying his sister Fausta. In 310 Maximian formed a plot against Constantine and was put to death by his son-in-law at Massilia. Maxentius resented the death of his father and prepared to attack Constantine in Gaul. Constantine anticipated his movements and invaded Italy at the head of a large army. Maxentius was defeated at Saxa Rubra, near Rome, in 312. He tried to escape but perished. It was in this campaign that Constantine is said by later Christian apologists to have been converted to Christianity. He is supposed to have seen in the sky a luminous cross with the inscription: "By this sign you conquer" (In hoc signo vinces is the rendition in Latin of a Greek phrase); and on the night before the decisive battle with Maxentius, a vision is said to have appeared to Constantine in his sleep, bidding him to inscribe the shields of his soldiers with the sacred monogram of Christ, the chi-rho. The tale of the cross seems to have grown out of that vision but the latter is not entitled to credit. It was to his interest to gain the affections of his numerous Christian subjects in his struggle with his rivals; and it was self-interest that probably led him to adopt Christianity. By his victory he became sole master of the West. Meanwhile, in 311 Licinius and Maximinus had divided the East between them; but in 313 a war broke out between them; Maximinus was defeated. This left only two emperors, Licinius in the East, Constantine in the West, and between these war broke out in 314. Licinius was defeated and put to death, leaving Constantine sole ruler. He moved the seat of the empire to Byzantium, which he called Constantinople, or the city of Constantine. He reigned in peace the rest of his life. He died in 337, and was baptized by Eusebius shortly before he died. His three sons, Constantine, Constantius and Constans succeeded him in the empire.]

Constantius, together with his brothers Constantine and Constans, secured the sovereignty from their father Constantine the Great. At this time, but at no other, Rome was under the rule of one Augustus and three Caesars; for Constantine left three sons; and there was Dalmaticus, his brother's son, not unlike his uncle. He was not long afterwards killed by the soldiers, rather through circumstances than at the instigation of Constantius. Constantine was killed at Aquileia by officers of Constantius in a war against his brother, which was ill advised. So the sovereignty passed to the two (i.e., Constantius and Constans).[Constantius II, Roman emperor, 337-361, third son of Constantine the Great by his second wife Fausta, received the East as his share of the empire on the death of his father. Upon his accession he became involved in war with the Persians, which was carried on with few interruptions during the greater part of his reign. This prevented him from taking any part in the struggle between his brothers, Constantine and Constans, which ended in the defeat and death of the former, and in the accession of the latter to the sole empire of the West in 340. After the death of Constans in 350, Constantine marched into the West to oppose Magnentius and Vetranio, both of whom had usurped the purple. Vetranio submitted, and Magnentius was finally crushed in 353, the empire thus becoming subject to one ruler. In 355 Constantius made Julian, the brother of Gallus, Caesar, and sent him into Gaul to oppose the barbarians. In 360 Julian was proclaimed Augustus by the soldiers at Paris. Constantius marched against him, but died on the way in Cicilia in 361. He was succeeded by Julian.]

Constans acquired the empire. For some time he was strict and righteous; but through unfortunate circumstances and evil friends, he was turned to licentiousness, becoming unbearable to the provinces and unacceptable to the army. At the instigation of Magnentius he was slain not far from Spain, in a castle called Helena, in the seventeenth year of his reign and the thirtieth year of his age.[Constans, youngest son of Constantine the Great, upon his father's death, received Illyria, Italy and Africa, as his share. After successfully resisting his brother Constantius, who was slain in invading his territory, Constans became master of the entire West. His weak and profligate character made him an object of contempt. He was slain in 350 by the soldiers of the usurper Magnentius.] After his death Magnentius held Italy, Africa and Gaul.[Magnentius, Roman emperor in the West (350-353), was a German by birth, and after serving as a common soldier, Constans eventually entrusted him with the Jovian and Herculean battalions, who had replaced the old praetorian guards when the empire was remodeled by Diocletian. Availing himself of his position, he organized a conspiracy against the profligate Constans, who was put to death by his emissaries. He was then acknowledged emperor in nearly all the Western provinces. The armies of Magnentius and Constantius met in the Battle of Mursa Major in 351; Magnentius led his troops into battle, while Constantius spent the day of battle praying in a nearby church. Despite Magnentius' heroism, his troops were defeated and forced to retreat back to Gaul. As a result of Magnentius' defeat, Italy ejected his garrisons and rejoined the loyalist cause. Magnentius made a final stand in 353 in the Battle of Mons Seleucus, after which he committed suicide by falling on his sword.] He attacked Greece anew, and Vetranio, with the consent of the army, was elected to rule and to protect Greece. He was a pious man, of good morals, and beloved by all throughout his long and successful military career; but he was deposed by Constantine, who made war to avenge his brother's death.[ Vetranio commanded the legions in Illyria and Pannonia when Constans was slain and his throne seized by Magnentius. The troops proclaimed Vetranio emperor, but he soon resigned in favor of Constantius and retired to Bithynia, where he passed the remainder of his life.] Nepotianus (Nepociano) caused a revolt at Rome in order to seize the government but was slain in retribution for his evil conduct.[Nepotianus, son of a half sister of Constantine the Great, was proclaimed emperor at Rome in 350, but was slain by Marcellinus, general of the usurper Magnentius, after a reign of only 28 days.] And so Gallus became emperor in the West. Magnentius ended his own life at Lyons in the third year and seventh month of his reign. Gallus was later slain in the wars. He was a cruel man and a ready tyrant, whenever he could make his will prevail.[Gallus was a son of Julius Constantius, grandson of Constantius Chlorus, nephew of Constantine the Great, and elder brother by a different mother, of Julian the Apostate. In 351 he was named Caesar by Constantius II, and was left in command of the East, where he conducted himself with great haughtiness and cruelty. In 354 he went to the West to meet Constantius at Milan, but was arrested at Petovio in Pannonia and sent to Pola in Istria where he was finally beheaded in prison.] Silvanus also, after stirring up revolution in Gaul, was killed in less than a month. Constantius was the sole Augustus in the empire. Quickly he sent Julian, his cousin, the brother of Gallus, who (i.e., Julian) was born from Constantius, the brother of his (i.e., Constantius II's) father Constantine, when his (i.e., Constantius II's) sister had been given in matrimony (to Julian), as Caesar against the Gauls.[Julian, born in 331 in Constantinople, was the son of Julius Constantius, half brother of Emperor Constantine I, and his second wife, Basilina. His paternal grandparents were Western Roman Emperor Constantius Chlorus and his second wife, Flavia Maximiana Theodora. His maternal grandfather was Caeionius Iulianus Camenius. Shortly afterwards Gallus, who had imposed a rule of terror during his brief reign, was executed (354), and Julian himself briefly imprisoned. However, Constantius still had to deal with the Sassanid (Persian) threat in the East, and so he turned to his last remaining male relative, Julian. He was summoned to the emperor in Mediolanum (Milan) and, on November 6th, 355, made Caesar of the West and married to Constantius II’s sister Helena.] When the barbarians had attacked many towns he quickly, through his own excellence, held in check the movements of the Gauls and the Germans. Constantius, while occupied with civil wars, died on the road between Cilicia and Cappadocia in the thirty-eighth year of his rule and the forty-fifth of his life. He was a man of extraordinary tranquility, calm and too trusting of his friends and servants.[The section in this paragraph beginning with Silvanus and going to the end of this paragraph is not in the German edition of the .]