Friday, December 9, 2016

The Vatican - part 6 (Peter, Paul and Mary)

The last stop on our Vatican tour.
St Peter's Basilica.
The beautiful Italian Renaissance building whose famous dome was designed by Michelangelo.

Note the wording around the dome in the following photo.
Each letter is about 7 foot tall.

To give an indication, to anyone who has not visited yet, of the size of the place please note the following photo of Bernini's breathtaking baldacchino (a pavilion like structure) that stands above alter and directly under the dome.

Now here is another photo of it but with this time with  people in the shot.


Many Popes are buried downstairs in the crypt (including Pope John Paul II - no that's not him below) and you can visit it, but I didn't think hubby would like it - he was a little Vatican'd out by this stage.

I see the word got out about my natty scarf trick.

This is my one regret of the tour.

Below is the statue of the Pieta by Michelangelo.
It depicts a dead Christ being held by Mary.
It is in my opinion his most beautiful and emotive work (sorry David).
He captures a moment of sorrow and heartbreak as Mary cradles her crucified son in her lap. 
Michelangelo was only 24 when he carved this masterpiece and it is the only work he ever signed.

My regret is that the crowd in front of The Pieta was so deep that I couldn't get close enough to really appreciate this statue that I had been dreaming of seeing for years.

The best view I got was through my zoom lens.

I seriously thought of hanging about until the crowd thinned enough to get close.
But hubby had that look that I knew only too well,
and it was time to go.

Outside into the scorching sun, I felt sorry for these Swiss guards.

Into a taxi and back to the hotel for a much needed shower and a nap before embarking on our second tour for the day.


  1. After the muted colors in the church the Swiss guards really stand out! No one will ignore them. I know you feel disappointed about your Pieta but I think you did a wonderful job with it. And it is very croppable, too. I ran it through my Picassa program just to see what might happen and with the brightening of the light to reflect the more original white and cropping you can do some wonderful things. I didn't save anything because I wasn't sure where to mail it to you so you could see, but give it a try or send me your address. It would be taking it from the web so low res for anything else, but really, it's quite striking. I would have been mesmerized at that spot.

    1. Jeanie thank you for taking the time to play around with the image. I was disappointed but thought if I could get a good shot of it then at least I can look at it and remember that I was there. I will try that with Picassa because I have the original shot in my laptop. I will let you know how it goes. x

  2. Stunning architecture in the Vatican - but I know what you mean, so much to see that it really needs to be visited in stages to appreciate every facet of it. The Pieta is amazing

    1. Yes all photos for these last posts were taken in the space of 2 hours. It wasn't until I was able to sit down later and think about each section that it really sunk in what I had just seen.

  3. I found the inside with the great dome so impressive! Overwhelming is the right word, like you say.

  4. I'm embarrassed to say I don't recall seeing that glorious sculpture, Debs ... perhaps my attention span is akin to your hubby's and it was worn down by then after the crypt visit and climb to the top. It's beautiful and I see why you love it so. {PS Thank you so much re sharing the pup bandana fundraising info ~ I really appreciate your help, lovely !} x0

    1. It was a very long morning. And you're welcome :)

  5. Excellent photos. A lot of people can't handle low interior lighting photography but you did very well.

  6. Stunning. Fabulous shots - I've never been and it looks amazing. I do feel sorry for those Swiss guards - such daft uniforms! But maybe the pay's good.

    1. I hope so. I can't quite make out the reasoning behind that design except that perhaps it's ceremonial. Usually the Swiss are so sensible.


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