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Saint Peter's Basilica

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ImageSaint Peter's Basilica is a large church in the Vatican City in Rome. It is believed to be
the burial place of St. Peter who was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus .Catholics
believe that St. Peter was buried in a cemetery where the Basilica now stands.  This is a
holy place for devout Catholics who come here for pilgrimage. It is the spiritual centre of
Catholicism. The Pope, who lives at the Vatican, often takes services at St. Peter's,
which is considered to be the largest church in the world. It has the capacity to hold over
60,000 people. Michelangelo, the master sculptor, was the architect of St Peter's. He
designed a dome that would dwarf the Pantheon which was situated nearby .It is smaller
in diameter but much higher than the Pantheon. The dome was made of heavy masonry
unlike the dome of the Pantheon which was made of volcanic tufa and super-light
pumice. The dome had to be strengthened by inserting large metal rings. Over the
years, cracks began to appear and eventually more rings had to be inserted to uphold
the structure.  The style of architecture is predominantly Renaissance and Baroque.
Inside, works of some of Italy's greatest artists like Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo
and Maderno have been showcased. The detailing of gilt, marble and mosaic is quite
overpowering. St. Peter's Basilica has many treasures. These include Christian relics,
the tombs of Popes and many other important people, famous artworks which are mostly
sculptures and other interesting things.  

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