Is Jesus Christ a Roman citizen?

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
27,234
Italy, Lago Maggiore
Technically before of "Caracalla" [that emperor had a so impressive name that they preferred to use the nickname ... he was ... Marcus Aurelius Severus Antoninus Pius Augustus] who in 212CE issued the Constitutio Antoniniana, to be a inhabitant on a domain of the Republic or of the Empire didn't mean to be a Roman citizen.

Caracalla would have given the citizenship to all the inhabitants of the Empire [before of him similar laws extended the citizenship to the inhabitants of a good part of the Italian peninsula].

Furthermore, if we consider the ways a not citizens got the citizenship ... they were all connected to serve the Romans [even spending money to build a house at Rome ...].

He wasn't a liberated slave [so the "manumissio" didn't happen].

About the condition of his parents ... it depends if their marriage was legal for the Roman law:

legal marriage ...

Roman father + foreign mother = Roman son

illegal marriage ...

foreign father + Roman mother = Roman son

But the Lex Minicia stated the contrary ... never Roman son.

The Lex Minicia [as for I know] was already valid when Jesus was born.
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
From a propaganda perspective, perhaps after his deification by Constantine?
But his humanly body had long been dead by then? Aside from the theological ramifications, would it have been typical practice to make a person a citizen post facto or in memoriam? And what would have been the benefit to such when Constantine was acknowledging Jesus as the Christ? That is, what purpose would it serve?
 

Dan Howard

Ad Honorem
Aug 2014
4,938
Australia
I guess he was, considering he was born in the Empire.
Matt already explained that simply being born in the empire does not make you a citizen. Assuming Jesus existed as described in the Gospels, he would have been a subject - a provincial non-citizen.
 
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Kirialax

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
4,899
Blachernai
I know I'll get criticize for this and taking heat. But since Jesus was born and raised in the Roman Empire. Politically speaking. Should he be considered....Roman?

Look I'm not being blasphemous or heretical. Just a curious question. Also I don't know if there's another thread like this.
Since his name isn't Aurelius and he didn't live after 212 AD, nope.
 
Sep 2017
19
United States
I know I'll get criticize for this and taking heat. But since Jesus was born and raised in the Roman Empire. Politically speaking. Should he be considered....Roman?

Look I'm not being blasphemous or heretical. Just a curious question. Also I don't know if there's another thread like this.
Not at all, actually. During Jesus' era, simply being born in the Empire didn't make you a citizen. At the time citizenship extended only to people in Italia as well as Roman colonies, major cities, and royal families of client states around the Empire.

You could earn citizenship through a few methods I believe, such as serving in the auxiliary for 25 years. Still, citizenship wouldn't really be expanded until Emperor Caracalla.
 

MAGolding

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
2,972
Chalfont, Pennsylvania
Is Jesus Christ a Roman citizen?
to answer the question in the title: IS Jesus Christ a Roman Citizen?

No.

1) There is no evidence that Jesus Christ or any member of his immediate family was ever a Roman citizen as opposed to a Roman subject.

2) Jesus Christ is reported to have been killed, returned from the dead, and ascended into heaven, about the year AD 33, give or take a few years. In any case he would have died of natural causes and ceased to be a citizen of any state over 1,800 years ago.

3) The Roman Empire is usually supposed to have ended in 476, 480, 1204, 1453, 1461, or 1806. Thus nobody is a citizen of the Roman Empire at the present and nobody ever will be one again until and unless the Roman Empire is revived in the future.

Since this is an English language forum, using correct English language tenses is a good idea.
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
6,040
Portugal
to answer the question in the title: IS Jesus Christ a Roman Citizen?

No.

1) There is no evidence that Jesus Christ or any member of his immediate family was ever a Roman citizen as opposed to a Roman subject.

2) Jesus Christ is reported to have been killed, returned from the dead, and ascended into heaven, about the year AD 33, give or take a few years. In any case he would have died of natural causes and ceased to be a citizen of any state over 1,800 years ago.

3) The Roman Empire is usually supposed to have ended in 476, 480, 1204, 1453, 1461, or 1806. Thus nobody is a citizen of the Roman Empire at the present and nobody ever will be one again until and unless the Roman Empire is revived in the future.

Since this is an English language forum, using correct English language tenses is a good idea.
Feel free to correct my grammar mistakes. I really need that kind of corrections.
 

Dan Howard

Ad Honorem
Aug 2014
4,938
Australia
Feel free to correct my grammar mistakes. I really need that kind of corrections.
It is more than a simple grammatical error in this case because it supports the fantasy that he is still alive and magically watching over us.