As a Roman emperor, Constantine is not completely unassociated with paganism, and there is some controversy over the vision which historical orthodoxy accepted as his conversion, demurring that it was pagan in content, not Christian.
Another aspect of Constantine that might indicate an incomplete acceptance of Christianity (from a modern view) was his notorious cruelty: he executed his own wife and eldest son in
[[326 ]] for unknown reasons. He also had [[Licinius]], the East Roman emperor, strangled after his defeat, something he had publicly promised not to do.
Family influence is sometimes adduced to account for a personal adoption of Christianity: [[Helen]] in this agenda is said to be "probably born a Christian" though virtually nothing is known of her background, save that her mother was the daughter of an innkeeper and her father a successful soldier, a career that excluded overt Christians. Certainly [[Helen]] demonstrated extreme piety in her later life in her trip to Palestine, where she discovered the [[True Cross]] and established basilicas.