Theme Week Rome – Vatican City

3 September 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, UNESCO World Heritage

Vatican City State Panorama from St. Peters Basilica © Marcus Winter

Vatican City State Panorama from St. Peters Basilica © Marcus Winter

Vatican City is a landlocked sovereign city-state whose territory consists of a walled enclave within the city of Rome, Italy. It has an area of approximately 44 hectares (110 acres), and a population of just over 800. The Vatican City is the world’s smallest state, being only around 44 ha (110 acres). In July 2007, the Vatican agreed to become the first carbon neutral state. They plan to accomplish this by offsetting carbon dioxide emissions with the creation of a Vatican Climate Forest in Hungary. Vatican City was established in 1929 by the Lateran Treaty, signed by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Gasparri, on behalf of the Holy See and by Prime Minister Benito Mussolini on behalf of the Kingdom of Italy. Vatican City State is distinct from the Holy See, which dates back to early Christianity and is the main episcopal see of 1.2 billion Latin and Eastern Catholic adherents around the globe. Ordinances of Vatican City are published in Italian; official documents of the Holy See are issued mainly in Latin. The two entities have distinct passports: the Holy See, not being a country, issues only diplomatic and service passports, whereas Vatican City State issues normal passports. In each case very few passports are issued.   read more…

The Sistine Chapel

13 June 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, Museums, Exhibitions

Sistine Chapel © Maus-Trauden/GFDL

Sistine Chapel © Maus-Trauden/GFDL

Sistine Chapel is the best-known chapel in the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the Pope in the Vatican City. It is famous for its architecture and its decoration that was frescoed throughout by Renaissance artists including Michelangelo, Sandro Botticelli, Pietro Perugino, Pinturicchio and others. Under the patronage of Pope Julius II, Michelangelo painted 1,100 m2 (12,000 sq ft) of the chapel ceiling between 1508 and 1512. The ceiling, and especially The Last Judgment (1535–1541), is widely believed to be Michelangelo’s crowning achievement in painting.   read more…

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