Marian Devotion as a Form of Legitimization of the Imperial Authority

Dragoș Boicu 1
  • 1 Research Centre for Theology, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Romania. Contact details: Mitropoliei 35 – Sibiu 550179, Romania


The present research addresses matters concerning the relationship between Church and state during the reign of Theodosius II of Rome, analyzing especially the case of legitimization of the imperial authority found in the first half of the fifth century when the Empress Pulcheria tried to identify herself with the Virgin Mary before her subjects in order to further maintain control of the state alongside her brother, Theodosius II. This paper also attempts to connect the problem of the political experiment with the development of a Marian devotion in Constantinople as a solution for pagan cults’ inculturation, reassessing Nestorius’ reaction in parallel with the position of Epiphanius of Salamina.

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