Chapter XL.—That having conferred the Dignity of Cæsars on his Three Sons at the Three Decennial Periods of his Reign, he dedicated the Church at Jerusalem.
By this time the thirtieth year of his reign was completed. In the course of this period, his three sons had been admitted at different times as his colleagues in the empire. The first, Constantinus, who bore his fathers name, obtained this distinction about the tenth year of his reign. Constantius, the second son, so called from his grandfather, was proclaimed Cæsar about the twentieth, while Constans, the third, whose name expresses the firmness and stability of his character, was advanced to the same dignity at the thirtieth anniversary of his fathers reign. 3337 Having thus reared a threefold offspring, a Trinity, 3338 as it were, of pious sons, and having received them severally at each decennial period to a participation in his imperial authority, he judged the festival of his Tricennalia to be a fit occasion for thanksgiving to the Sovereign Lord of all, at the same time believing that the dedication of the church which his zealous magnificence had erected at Jerusalem might advantageously be performed.
These are general dates; “about” the tenth, etc., would have been more exact. Compare Prolegomena, under Life.550:3338
[Γρι€δος λόγῳ. Well may the old English Translator remark on this, “An odd expression.” We may go further, and denounce it as an instance of the senseless and profane adulation to which our author, perhaps in the spirit of his age, seems to have been but too much inclined.—Bag.]