Saint Peter’s Basilica is a catholic church located within the Vatican City, and overlooking Saint Peter’s Square.
The famous square, where pilgrims gather every day, is a marvellous example of Baroque architecture and town planning.
The giant oval order of columns stretching across the end of the square symbolizes two huge arms embracing the devotees.
As Bernini stated "Being almost like a matrix for all the other churches, Saint Peter’s Basilica ought to have a colonnade welcoming everyone, from the catholic believers to confirm their faith, to the heretics to reunite them with the Church, to the infidels show them the true faith".The triple colonnade relates to a topic of the Old Testament, where Ezekiel describes the area outside God's Temple as a porticus incta portici triplici, as well as a symbol of the Trinity Dogma.
As it is said in the paper records, the concave shape of the square creates a "theatre" effect, because when the square is flocked with people the crowd can see themselves, like in a cavea.
Saint Peter’s Basilica is the main papal basilica, the centre of the Catholic religion, and is often referred to as the biggest church in the world. The main catholic events, including the Pope proclamation, take place there.
Architects like Bramante, Rapahel, Michelangelo, Maderno, and Bernini designed the Basilica, and several other artists embellished it with their statues and works of art.
In the right aisle is Michelangelo's Pietà (1499), a white marble masterpiece now protected by a glass frame after being seriously damaged by a mentally disordered person in 1972. In the left aisle is the Chapel of the baptistery, designed by Carlo Fontana and decorated with mosaic tiles. The aisle also contains the tombs of Pius X, John XXIII, and Benedict XV.
DID YOU KNOW...?
Saint Peter’s Dome is not only the symbol of the Basilica itself but also of Rome and the Vatican City. It was built in only two years' time by Giacomo della Porta according to Michelangelo’s designs. It consists of two vaults placed one on top of the other, being the internal one thicker and the external one a protection of the former. The same design was used by Brunelleschi for the Dome of Florence.
Visiting Saint Peter’s Dome will allow you to enjoy one of the most suggestive views of Rome, as long as you will toil for it. In fact, the elevator will take you up to a certain height, and then you will have to proceed on foot 330 steps up! Going up is not easy and as you proceed the walls get narrower, so we advise anybody who suffers from claustrophobia or vertigo against visiting it.
Choose a bed and breakfast or an apartment near Saint Peter in order to live in the heart of Christianity during your holiday in Rome. A wide selection of facilities nearby this area is at your disposal, choose your perfect b&b, guest house or apartment in the selection here on the side!