The Sala di Costantino, which is named after the emperor Constantine the Great (r. 306-337), was used for receptions and official ceremonies. The large hall was painted by Giulio Romano (1499-1546), Giovanni Francesco Penni (1488-1528) and Raffaellino del Colle (c. 1490-1556).
The subject of the frescoes is the church's victory over paganism and its establishment in the city of Rome. The four wall frescoes depict: The Baptism of Constantine, The Battle of the Milvian Bridge, The Apparition of the Cross and Constantine's Donation of Rome to Pope Silvester I. The frescoes were commissioned by Pope Leo X (r. 1513-21), but completed in 1524, during the reign of Pope Clement VII (r. 1523-34). (The face of Pope Silvester I, in the Baptism of Constantine, bears a resemblance to that of Pope Clement VII.)
The original wooden ceiling was replaced by the present vault at the behest of Pope Pius IV (r. 1559-65). The vault was decorated by Tommaso Laureti and his assistants and completed in 1585. The central fresco depicts The Triumph of Christian Religion.