Constantine is 666

Reading Ghost Empire brought to mind the graffiti that sprang up around Canberra like a textual disease in the late 1980s.

The words "Constantine is 666" began to appear with increasing frequency and I recall asking my father what it meant. He explained that Constantine was a Roman Emperor.

There are many stories and theories about why Constantine adopted Christianity and promoted it within the Roman Empire. This morning my partner was telling me about an idea that it sold pacifism to Christian enemies of the Empire, creating a situation in which they could be amalgamated.

Constantine's role in creating the Council of Nicaea is significant:
The Council of Nicaea is the first major attempt by Christians to define orthodoxy for the whole Church. Until Nicaea, all previous Church Councils had been local or regional synods affecting only portions of the Church.
The result unified the Roman Empire. Anyway, enough of the ancient history lesson.

I haven't found online an explanation of the graffiti in Canberra "Constantine is 666," but there's reference to it in this letter to The Canberra Times from June 1989, which was found here.

My memory was that the slogan became increasingly common but it wasn't until the Prime Minister's residence was defaced that the Australian Federal Police appeared to put significant effort into catching the culprit.

The Lodge is the Canberra home for the (so-called) leader of Australia and it has curved white walls about eight feet high surrounding it. These days it has extensive security measures but in the late '80s there was probably only someone at the gate and maybe another guard positioned inside.

I remember seeing the words "Constantine is 666" were spray-painted on the wall and thinking it was a significant achievement. When you consider that most graffiti tags these days is barely more than a scribble, I think it says a lot about the determination of the guy to promote the message.

It's less clear to me why he promulgated the view that a Roman Emperor was Satan, just as I'm lost for his identity. Think I'll ask a few Canberrans to research it for further discussion.