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Eusebia, Constantina and their political and cultural actions at the court of Julian Caesar and Emperor Constantius II (4th Century AD)

Grant number: 23/01155-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Master's degree
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2023
Effective date (End): February 29, 2024
Field of knowledge:Humanities - History - Ancient and Medieval History
Principal Investigator:Margarida Maria de Carvalho
Grantee:Thaís de Almeida Rodrigues
Supervisor: Shaun Fitzroy Tougher
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Humanas e Sociais (FCHS). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Franca. Franca , SP, Brazil
Research place: Cardiff University, Wales  
Associated to the scholarship:22/02732-8 - Eusebia, Constantina and their political and cultural actions at the court of Julian Caesar and Emperor Constantius II (4th Century AD), BP.MS

Abstract

Our project aims to study the political and cultural actions of two imperial women, that is, the Empress Eusebia (? - 360) and Constantina (325 - 354). They were, respectively, the second wife and sister of Emperor Constantius II. Therefore, our time frame is situated in the fourth century, a period that we capture from the conception of Late Antiquity, specifically during the government of Julian Caesar and Emperor Constantius II. The textual documentation selected for this research also belongs to the fourth century, namely Panegyric in honor of Empress Eusebia and Letter to the Senate and People of Athens, by Julian (331 - 363), Res Gestae (books XIV-XXI), by Ammianus Marcellinus (325 - 391) and Ecclesiastical History by Philostorgius (368 - 439). Such works report some interferences by Eusebia and Constantina in imperial matters of a political-cultural nature. Among them, we are aware of Eusebia's support for Julian's appointment as Caesar and Constantine's role in convincing the usurper Vetranio (? - 356) to self-declare Caesar and fight the usurper Magnentius (303 - 353). From the analysis of these works, our hypothesis is those imperial women could perform the role of maintainers of the imperial order, even if they did not hold defined political and administrative positions. Thus, they would be able to intervene in both the external and internal affairs of the Roman Empire, such as problems related to borders, usurpations and political-religious issues. (AU)

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