Visiting St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome | Vatican City
St. Peter's Basilica | The Greatest of All Churches in Christendom
St. Peter's Basilica is an Italian Renaissance church that was designed primarily by Donato Bramante, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Michelangelo, and Carlo Maderno. Construction of the basilica began in 1506 and was completed in 1626. The basilica is located adjacent to St. Peter’s Square, only a 10-minute walk away from the Vatican Museums.
The largest church in the world, St. Peter’s Basilica is more than just the most important building in Christendom. A cultural, historical, and architectural landmark, the church holds within itself treasures from millennia including paintings, sculptures, artifacts, and more.
Why Visit St Peter's Basilica?
Who Built the St. Peter's Basilica?
The Old St. Peter's Basilica was built in the 4th century by the Roman emperor Constantine the Great. The plan for the present St. Peter's Basilica was conceived by Pope Nicholas V. In 1506, Julius II laid the first stone for the new basilica. Construction of the present basilica was completed between April 1506 and November 1626. It was designed principally by Donato Bramante, Michelangelo, Carlo Maderno and Gian Lorenzo Bernini.
Where is St. Peter's Basilica Located?
St Peter's Basilica Timings
St Peter's Basilica History in a Nutshell
- As per Catholic tradition, Saint Peter, after spending 34 years spreading the word of Christianity, travelled to Rome. Here, he was crucified upside down on a cross in Circus of Nero, and buried nearby on what is now the Vatican Hill.
- Between 319 AD and 333 AD Emperor Constantine The Great built the Old Basilica on the grounds of the burial spot of St. Peter.
- With the old Basilica falling into disrepair, at the behest of Pope Julius II, the current St. Peter’s Basilica was built in the 16th Century.
St. Peter's Basilica Highlights
St. Peter's Treasury
St. Peter’s Treasury is another section of the basilica that has an admission charge. Its exhibition contains church ornaments, statues, and various other objects that were usually royal gifts such as the Tomb of Sixtus IV, and the Papal tiara. The most ancient object in the Treasury is the Vatican Cross which had been gifted by Emperor Justine III. It has a series of mounted cabochon-cut, colored gems (emeralds, jaspers, aquamarines, agates, rock crystal). In the center, you will find a capsule containing fragments of the Holy Cross.
Frequently Asked Questions About St. Peter's Basilica
A. The Old St Peter's Basilica was built between 319 AD and 333 to commemorate Saint Peter, who is believed to have been buried there. In the 16th century, at the behest of Pope Julius II, the current St. Peter’s Basilica was built after the old one fell into disrepair.
A. As a church, St. Peter's Basilica expects its visitors to follow certain decorum. A dress code is strictly enforced at St Peter's Basilica. Clothing above the knees, low cut tops and bare shoulders are not allowed.