Constantine the Great, popery, forgery, Donation of Constantine (Constitutum Constantini), Konstantin Mihailović, legend
The work of Konstantin Mihailović from Ostrovica, Serbian janissary from the 15th century, mentions that Constantine the Great “conceded Rome to Holy Father, Pope Sylvester.” This actually refers to a legend dating from the 5th century according to which the High Priest of Rome supposedly had converted, baptized and miraculously healed the Emperor. In gratitude, Constantine the Great gave many privileges and gifts to the High Priest of Rome. Based on this legend, during the second half of the 8th century, and most certainly before 770, a document known as “Donation of Constantine (Constitutum Constantini)” was created, according to which, the Pope has been supposedly given, by the first Christian Emperor, the rule over Rome, Italy, and the whole of Western Europe. In 1440s Nicholas of Cusa and Lorenzo Valla proved that without any doubt this document was a forgery. It is obvious that Konstantin Mihailović, who has written his work at the turn of 15th and 16th century, could not had known that the story about Constantine the Great and Pope Sylvester had been proved in the meantime to be a forgery.