Constantine Essay, Research Paper

November 9, 1998

Brandon McGarrell

Constantine and Sigma Chi

The design of the white cross that symbolizes Sigma Chi is patterned after the Christian cross that Emperor Constantine had envisioned the night before he attacked Rome in the battle at Melvin Bridge. Maxentius, the leader of the Roman army had died a few days earlier due to poor construction of a bridge while on retreat. However, the main bulk his army had made it behind Roman walls and were waiting for Constantine behind Melvin Bridge. Blocked by the bridge many had thought that Constantine would not attack. At high noon as Constantine and his army approached the bridge he saw a cross above the sun with the inscription “In this sign thou shalt conquer?. Constantine made his army paint the cross on their shields moments before they attacked. Even though the Roman army was much larger and was believed to be stronger they made no resistance against Constantine.

Benjamin Runkle at some point must have read a passage that described the battle at Melvin Bridge. Just as I felt chills when I read the passage I believe it gave Mr. Runkle chills also. When I read something like this it inspires me to be more courageous and stand up for what I believe. It gives me the feeling that I too want to do something special, and not take defeat at any challenge. I think that is what the white cross stands for, I know when I walk around campus with my pledge pin I feel much stronger both emotionally and physically. This helps me be more courageous in my daily activities, while my task may not be as historical as Constantine?s it helps make me a better person.

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