EBK Activity Sheets

 



How Religion all changed in Roman Britain


Christian-Eating Lion -  Nash Ford Publishing
 
  • For the first 300 years that the Romans ruled Britain, the Romano-British worshipped many different gods. They were pagans, like the Saxons.
  • In the Middle East, a religion called Christianity was started by Jesus Christ, around the year AD 25.
  • Christians believe in only one God. This religion was very unpopular with the Roman Government who thought you should believe in lots of gods and worship them in temples. So Christianity was banned.
  • Legends tell us that Christianity was brought to Britain by Jesus's grand uncle, Joseph of Arimathea, in AD 63. These stories are probably made up.
  • Traders and merchants (people selling things) brought Christian ideas to Britain in the 2nd century. The Christians had to worship in secret.
  • Sometimes, they were hunted down and executed. In Rome, they were eaten by lions! This might have happened in Britain too.
  • We know of at least three Christians who were executed in Britain: St. Alban, St. Aaron and St. Julius.
  • In AD 313, the Emperor Constantine changed the law. He said it was OK to be a Christian.
  • Christianity quickly became very popular. Romano-British bishops went to a big conference at Arles (in France) the next year.
  • Archaeologists have dug up the remains of several Romano-British churches. Some pagan temples were turned into churches.
  • By the time the Romans left Britain,  many people in the country were Christians.

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