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The Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
(Latin: Palatium Apostolicum; Italian: Palazzo Apostolico) is the official residence of the Pope
Pope
of Rome, which is located in Vatican City. It is also known as the Papal Palace, Palace of the Vatican and Vatican Palace. The Vatican itself refers to the building as the Palace of Sixtus V in honor of Pope
Pope
Sixtus V.[2]

The Portone di Bronzo at the Vatican Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
entrance.

The building contains the Papal Apartments, various offices of the Catholic Church
Catholic Church
and the Holy See, private and public chapels, Vatican Museums, and the Vatican Library, including the Sistine Chapel, Raphael
Raphael
Rooms, and Borgia Apartment. The modern tourist can see these last and other parts of the palace, but other parts, such as the Sala Regia and Cappella Paolina, are closed to tourists. The Scala Regia can be seen into from one end but not entered.

Contents

1 History 2 Palace structure

2.1 Sistine Chapel 2.2 Raphael
Raphael
Rooms 2.3 Borgia Apartments 2.4 Clementine Hall

3 Other uses 4 Gallery 5 See also 6 Notes 7 References

History[edit] In the fifth century, Pope
Pope
Symmachus built a papal palace close to the Old St. Peter's Basilica
Old St. Peter's Basilica
which served an alternative residence to the Lateran Palace. The construction of a second fortified palace was sponsored by Pope
Pope
Eugene III and extensively modified under Pope Innocent III in the twelfth century.[3] Upon returning to Rome in 1377 after the interlude of the Avignon Papacy, which saw Rome subject to civil unrest and the abandonment of several Christian monuments, the popes chose to reside first at Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere
Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere
and then at Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. The Vatican Palace had fallen into disrepair from lack of upkeep and the Lateran Palace
Lateran Palace
underwent two destructive fires, in 1307 and 1361, which did irreparable harm.[4] In 1447, Pope
Pope
Nicholas V razed the ancient fortified palace of Eugene III to erect a new building, the current Apostolic Palace.[5] In the 15th century, the Palace was placed under the authority of a prefect. This position of Apostolic Prefect
Prefect
lasted from the 15th century till the 1800s, when the Papal States
Papal States
fell into economic difficulties. In 1884, when this post was reviewed in light of saving money, Pope
Pope
Leo XIII created a committee to administer the palace.[6] The major additions and decorations of the palace are the work of the following popes for 150 years. Construction of the current version of the palace began on 30 April 1589[1] under Pope
Pope
Sixtus V and its various intrinsic parts were completed by later successors, Pope
Pope
Urban VII, Pope
Pope
Innocent XI and Pope
Pope
Clement VIII. In the 20th century, Pope Pius XI built a monumental art gallery and museum entrance. Construction of the Papal Palace (also known as the Apostolic Palace or Vatican Palace) at the Vatican in Vatican City, took place mainly between 1471 and 1605. Covering 162,000m squared (1,743,753ft squared), it contains the Papal Apartments, offices of the Roman Catholic Church
Catholic Church
and Holy See, chapels, Vatican Library, museums and art galleries.[7] Palace structure[edit]

A model of the palace in the Vatican Museums. The buildings are arranged around a central courtyard.

The Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
is run by the Prefecture of the Pontifical Household. The palace is more accurately a series of self-contained buildings within the well-recognized outer structure which is arranged around the Courtyard of Sixtus V (Cortile di Sisto V). It is located northeast of St Peter's Basilica
St Peter's Basilica
and adjacent to the Bastion of Nicholas V and Palace of Gregory XIII. The Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
houses both residential and support offices of various functions as well as administrative offices not focused on the life and functions of the Pope
Pope
himself. Sistine Chapel[edit] Main article: Sistine Chapel

Under the patronage of Julius II, Michelangelo
Michelangelo
painted the chapel ceiling between 1508 and 1512.

Perhaps the best known of the Palace chapels is the Sistine Chapel named in honor of Sixtus IV (Francesco della Rovere). It is famous for its decoration that was frescoed throughout by Renaissance artists including Michelangelo, Sandro Botticelli, Pietro Perugino, Pinturicchio, Domenico Ghirlandaio, and others. One of the primary functions of the chapel is as a venue for the election of each successive Pope
Pope
in a conclave of the College of Cardinals. In this closed-door election, the cardinals choose a successor to the traditionally first pope, St. Peter, who is traditionally buried in the crypts of nearby St. Peter's Church. Raphael
Raphael
Rooms[edit] Main article: Raphael
Raphael
Rooms This suite of rooms is famous for its frescos by a large team of artists working under Raphael. They were originally intended as a suite of apartments for Pope
Pope
Julius II. He commissioned Raphael, then a relatively young artist from Urbino, and his studio in 1508 or 1509 to redecorate the existing interiors of the rooms entirely. It was possibly Julius' intent to outshine the apartments of his predecessor (and rival) Pope
Pope
Alexander VI, as the Stanze are directly above Alexander's Borgia Apartments. They are on the third floor, overlooking the south side of the Belvedere Courtyard. Running from east to west, as a visitor would have entered the apartment, but reversing the sequence in which the Stanze were frescoed, and also the route of the modern visitor, the rooms are the Sala di Constantino ("Hall of Constantine"), the Stanza di Eliodoro ("Room of Heliodorus"), the Stanza della Segnatura (the earliest and the most admired) ("Room of the Signature") and the Stanza dell'Incendio del Borgo ("The Room of the Fire in the Borgo"). After the death of Julius in 1513, with two rooms frescoed, Pope
Pope
Leo X continued the program. Following Raphael's death in 1520, his assistants Gianfrancesco Penni, Giulio Romano
Giulio Romano
and Raffaellino del Colle finished the project with the frescoes in the Sala di Costantino. Borgia Apartments[edit] Main article: Borgia Apartments The Borgia Apartments
Borgia Apartments
is a suite of rooms in the Palace adapted for personal use by Pope
Pope
Alexander VI (Rodrígo de Borgia). He commissioned the Italian painter Pinturicchio
Pinturicchio
to lavishly decorate the apartments with frescoes. The paintings and frescoes, which were executed between 1492 and 1494, drew on a complex iconographic program that used themes from medieval encyclopedias, adding an eschatological layer of meaning and celebrating the supposedly divine origins of the Borgias.[8] The rooms are variously considered a part of the Vatican Library
Vatican Library
and Vatican Museums. Some of the rooms are now used for the Vatican Collection of Modern Religious Art, inaugurated by Pope
Pope
Paul VI in 1973. Clementine Hall[edit] Main article: Clementine Hall The Clementine Hall
Clementine Hall
was established in the 16th century by Pope Clement VIII in honor of Pope
Pope
Clement I, the third pope. Like other chapels and apartments in the Palace, the hall is notable for its large collection of frescos and other art. Other uses[edit] The term Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
has been used in other contexts not directly related to the actual Palace of Sixtus V. It has been used, for example, as a metonym for the papacy itself in the same way the term White House
White House
is used to describe the U.S.presidential administration generally, rather than the physical building itself. The term was also referenced in the video game Civilization IV: Beyond the Sword, where a player could establish an Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
as the symbolic "home" of a civilization's state religion.[9] While the game's developers did represent the Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
function with an image of St. Peter's Square
St. Peter's Square
(adjacent to the Apostolic Palace), the image, somewhat ironically, does not actually include a view of the Palace itself. Regardless, the in-game function of the Apostolic Palace is not religion-specific and the use of the term is representative of religious administration generally, rather than a specific reference to the Vatican. Gallery[edit]

Apostolic Palace

Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
from St. Peter's Square

Scala Regia by Gian Lorenzo Bernini

Plan of the Apostolic Palace
Apostolic Palace
(1893–1901)

See also[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Apostolic Palace.

Vatican City
Vatican City
portal

Domus Sanctae Marthae Index of Vatican City-related articles

Notes[edit]

^ a b The lives of the modern painters, sculptors and architects – Giovanni Pietro Bellori ^ Vatican Press Office guide – buildings of the Vatican Archived May 29, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. ^ "Le Palais du Vatican" [Palace of the Vatican] (in French). Rome Découverte. Archived from the original on 26 April 2013. Retrieved 14 August 2013.  ^ Pedro Tafur, Andanças e viaje (in Spanish) ^ Müntz, Eugène (1878). Les arts à la cour des Papes pendant le XVe et le XVIe siècle (in French). Georg Olms Verlag. ISBN 9783487413006. Retrieved 14 August 2013.  ^ Levillain 2002, p. 1093-1094. ^ Glenday, Craig (2013). Guinness Book of World Records. p. 155. ISBN 978-1-908843-15-9.  ^ Krén, Emil; Marx, Daniel. "Frescoes in the Borgia Apartments
Borgia Apartments
of the Palazzi Pontifici in Vatican". Web Gallery of Art. Retrieved 14 August 2013.  ^ Civilization IV: Beyond the Sword Official Site

References[edit]

Levillain, Philippe (2002), Dictionnaire historique de la papauté, The Papacy: An Encyclopedia, II (Illustrated ed.), Routledge, ISBN 0-415-92230-5, retrieved 20 December 2009  Morton, H.V. (2002), A Traveller in Rome (Reprint ed.), Da Capo Press, ISBN 0-306-81131-6, retrieved 20 December 2009  The Vatican: spirit and art of Christian Rome. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1982. ISBN 0870993488. 

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Papacy

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Francis' residence) Gardens Mater Ecclesiae Monastery ( Pope
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The Resurrection

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Decoration of the Sistine Chapel

Life of Moses

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Leaving to Egypt 1 Youth of Moses
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2 The Crossing of the Red Sea 3/4/5 The Descent from Mount Sinai 3/6 The Punishment of the Rebels
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7/8

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The Baptism of Christ
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Key: 1 Pietro Perugino 2 Sandro Botticelli 3 Cosimo Rosselli 4 Domenico Ghirlandaio 5 Biagio d'Antonio 6 Piero di Cosimo 7 Luca Signorelli 8 Bartolomeo della Gatta 9 Michelangelo 10 Raphael Pope
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