-On October 28, 312 AD, the Roman general and East Rome governorConstantine defeated Rome’s Emperor Maxteus in a one day war known as ’Paul Milvian’ war. Maxteus was a supporter of selection of the emperor by Roman Senate and Constantine opposed this old Roman method. In addition, Maxteus rejected Constantine’s proposal of the Roman Empire becoming a confederation of two Eastern and Western parts and regarded it as an intention to disintegrate and dissolve Rome. After victory, Constantine gathered his forces and told them that during the war, when he faced the sun to ask for victory, he had seen a luminous cross in the sun and therefore had decided to become a Christian. This led to the issuance of Milan Charter on November 9 andhence recognizing and tolerating Christianity in the Roman peninsula. Those imprisoned because of being Christian were freed and their assets were returned to them. Constantine was the first Christian Roman emperor and heset Constantinople(Istanbul) as his capital.
Situated on a peninsula at the entrance to theBlack Sea, Turkey’s largest city lies on either side of the Bosporus and thus is located in both Europe and Asia. Byzantium was founded as a Greek colony in the 8th century BC. Passing to the Persian Achaemenian dynasty in 512 BC and then to Alexander theGreat, it became a free city under the Romans in the 1st century AD. The emperor, Constantine I, made the city the seat of the Eastern Roman Empire in 330, later naming it Constantinople. It remained the capital of the subsequent Byzantine Empire after the fall of Rome in the late 5th century. In the 6th–13th centuries it was frequently besieged by Persians, Arabs, Bulgars, and Russians. It was captured by the Fourth Crusade (1203) and turned over to Latin Christian rule. It was returned to Byzantine rule in 1261. In 1453 it was captured by the Ottoman Empire and made the Ottoman capital. When the Republic of Turkey was founded in 1923, the capital was moved to Ankara, and Constantinople was officially renamed Istanbul in 1930. Many of the city’s historic sites are located in the medieval walled city (Stamboul). Among its architectural treasures are the Hagia Sophia, the Mosque of Süleyman, and the Blue Mosque. Its educational institutions include the University of Istanbul (founded 1453), Turkey’s oldest university.