"Vatican City" History Tip by Willettsworld
History, Vatican City: 21 reviews and 31 photos
Vatican City is the world capital of Catholicism and is also the world's smallest state. It occupies 43ha (106 acres) within high walls watched over by the Vatican guard. It was the site where St Peter was martyred in AD 64 and buried in a necropolis near the site of his crucifixion where the present day St Peter's Basilica now stands. It is also the residence of the popes who have succeeded him. The papal palaces are home to the Sistine Chapel and the wonderful collections of the Vatican Museums. Neighbouring Trastevere is quite different, a picturesque old quarter, whose inhabitants consider themselves to be the only true Romans.
The Vatican, a sovereign state since February 1929, is ruled by the pope, Europe's only absolute monarch. About 500 people live here and, as well as accomodation for staff and ecclesiasts, the city has it's own post office, banks, currency (even though it's still the Euro), judicial system, radio station, shops and daily newspaper.
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