JUBILEE CULTURAL ROUTES

Vatican Obelisk

You are along the route: EGYPT THE EMPIRE THE POPES. THE CITY OF OBELISKS

obelisco vaticano

Piazza S. Pietro
Always visible.

In 37 AD, Emperor Caligula had a majestic, seventh century BC red granite obelisk brought from Heliopolis, in Egypt to Rome and erected in the Circus – arena intended for chariot races – he had built on land at the foot of the Vatican Hill owned by the Julio-Claudian family.

Precisely in this circus, in the shadow of the obelisk, many Christians were killed as martyrs among whom, St. Peter.

In 1586, Pope Sixtus V ordered the obelisk to be moved, using a method devised by Domenico Fontana, to the centre of St. Peter’s Square, which it still dominates today from a height of more than 40 m including the base.

How to get the step: Vatican Obelisk

Largo del Colonnato, 9, 00120 Roma RM, Italy

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