St. Peter’s Altar

The altar in St. Peter’s Basilica, located in the Vatican City in Rome, Italy, is a central feature of the basilica and a significant place of worship for Catholics. 

The apse, or the semi-circular area at the end of the basilica directly beneath the dome, houses it.

Gian Lorenzo Bernini, a renowned Italian architect and sculptor, designed the current altar in St. Peter’s Basilica in the mid-17th century. 

White marble composes it and intricate carvings and decorations adorn it. 

A large, circular platform supports the altar and marble columns surround it, adorned with statues and other decorative elements.

At the center of the altar is a large bronze tabernacle, a container for the Eucharist, and a consecrated bread and wine that Catholics believe is the body and blood of Jesus Christ. 

Gold and silver ornamentation adorns the tabernacle and four bronze angels, also designed by Bernini, surround it.

Above the altar is a large fresco painting by Giovanni Battista Gaulli, also known as Baciccio, depicting the Glory of St. Peter. 

A gilded frame holds the fresco, and cherubs and other decorative elements surround it.

The altar in St. Peter’s Basilica is a central part of the liturgical life of the basilica, where many important ceremonies and masses take place. 

It is also a popular destination for tourists and pilgrims who visit the basilica.

In addition to its religious significance, the altar in St. Peter’s Basilica is also an essential work of art and a testament to Bernini’s architectural and decorative skills and other artists who contributed to its design. 

It is a unique and iconic feature of the basilica and an integral part of the rich cultural and religious history of Rome and Vatican City. 

If you plan to enrich your experience while your visit you must book a guided tour and know the history with a live tour guide.

Featured Image: Bruno Coelho / Bruno Coelho

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