Ante-Nicene (a.k.a. Pre-Nicene, Early) Christian Period
Introduction to Ante-Nicene Period (literally, before or pre Nicaea) of Christianity
The period of time from A.D. 100 (about the time of the Apostle John′s death) to A.D. 325 is referred to as the Pre-Nicene or Ante-Nicene Period of Christianity. This timeframe falls between what are often called the Apostolic and the Nicene, Post-Nicene Periods. The Council of Nicea in A.D. 325 is viewed as the dividing line.
The Roman Emperor Constantine and co-Emperor Licinius created favorable conditions for Christianity through the Edict of Milan (A.D. 313), which proclaimed tolerance of all religions throughout the empire. During the time of Emperor Constantine (emperor from A.D. 306-337), the number of ″Christians″ increased exponentially. The impact on Christianity, both pro and con, was dramatic during this period.
The purpose of this guide to is to introduce both primary and secondary sources for this period.