The Liber Pontificalis states that the original building was erected over the relics of St Paul by Constantine. The rebuilding of a large basilica was certainly planned in the late 4th cent. and completed by the Emp. Honorius (395–402/3). This was destroyed by fire in 1823, only the triumphal arch and its mosaics surviving. The present church, which conforms to the plan of the earlier basilica, was consecrated in 1854.
Subjects: Medieval and Renaissance History (500 to 1500) — Christianity.