All You Need To Know About St. Peter’s Basilica

As the largest church in the world and home to some of the most famous art in history, St. Peter’s Basilica is an experience you won’t want to miss if you’re traveling near Rome.

This is where leader of the Catholic faith Pope Francis resides, the Vatican city is considered as its own country within Italy. When you find yourself in St. Peters Basilica, make sure to soak in the amazing architecture as well as mosaics in every corner. There truly is no place that isn’t extraordinary within the building. Make sure to also schedule a time to visit the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel to see even more extravagant art and pieces of history. Knees and shoulders must be covered when you visit inside the buildings of the Vatican city so be conscious in preparing for that. Here are some aspects of St. Peter’s Basilica you won’t want to miss.

The Tomb of St. Peter

St. Peter's Tomb
UNSPLASH Ehud Neuhaus

St. Peter was one of the twelve disciples of Jesus and is very important in the Catholic faith. Jesus left Peter with the task of building the Catholic church and that is why he is buried underneath the Basilica, of which it is named after. Inside the main floor of the church there is a giant bronze monument that sits right above where St. Peter is buried. The structure, known as St. Peter’s Baldachin by Gianlorenzo Bernini, was commissioned by Pope Urban VIII and was completed in 1634.

Mosaic Ceilings

St. Peter's Basilica
UNSPLASH Ehud Neuhaus

The entire ceiling of the Basilica consists of extravagant mosaics filled with detailed definition. Mosaics are made from an assortment of miniature pieces of colored glass and stone which explains why it has been so well-preserved.

La Pieta

St. Peter's Basilica
UNSPLASH Grant Whitty

Along with the David, La Pieta is one of Michelangelo’s most famous sculptures and it sits to the right of the entryway of the Basilica. Finished in 1499, the sculpture depicts Mary holding Jesus after his crucifixion. Mary’s drapes depict movement and Jesus looks limp in her arms. Truly a masterpiece made out of marble. While this was a common subject for many artists of this time period, Michelangelo’s version was different in that Mary was depicted as being youthful.

Katherine McGowan

Social Media Associate

Katherine is a New Jersey native who is passionate about understanding culture through its history and food. You can most likely find her enjoying an Aperol Spritz with a local or getting lost on a windy cobblestone road. Some of her other favorite cities are NYC, Amsterdam, London and Rome.

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