I recently announced a tour I will be doing – Covid permitting – to Rome and Southern Italy this coming June. (See it here, with a brochure: https://ehrmanblog.org/interested-in-going-to-rome-with-me/) On the tour I’ll be giving lectures and hanging out for the ten days with everyone else; it should be great fun. For the sites we see we will have local tour guides who are flat-out experts on everything..
In this post I’m announcing a tour that will be coming directly on the heels of that one – again, Covid permitting. It is possible to come to either one, or both. Those who choose to do both will get a discount. Consider it buying in bulk. This second one will be to the Southwest coast of Croatia and nearby islands.
This is one of the most gorgeous places in the known universe, and I’m particularly excited about it, because I’ve never been there. I’m drawn by the beauty but also by the medieval towns and, even more ancient, its connection with some very important figures and events of early Christianity. In particular, we will be visiting the palace of the emperor Domitian in Split and we will be in the same part of the world that his successor, the emperor Constantine came from (in what is now Serbia).
Domitian is known as the emperor who instigated the ten-year “Great Persecution” of the Christians (303-13 CE); Constantine was the first Christian emperor who put an end to the persecution and made Christianity a legal and acceptable religion (he did not, btw, make it the official state religion, even though that’s what everyone says). In other words, these two were fundamental in the ultimate Christianization of the empire.
And that will be the theme of my lectures in this tour – how the Roman empire, which had been 93-95% pagan, ended up becoming Christian. I will especially be focusing on the persecutions against Christians and the role that Domitian and Constantine played in the embattled and then victorious church. Fantastically interesting stuff.
Wanna see what the tour will be like? Here’s the brochure. The tour company, Thalassa, is terrific. This will be a small tour where I’ll be spending massive of time with everyone there. I hope you can think about it!