Forgive me if I overblog, but this was my third trip to Rome, and I would go again and again. I love it that much!
Our first stop was St. Peter's Basilica and the Vatican Museums. The museums are filled with gallery after gallery of beautiful tapestries, statues, paintings, mosaics, etc.! We saw one really interesting tapestry where the figure appeared to follow you no matter where you were in the room! Even the foot always pointed towards you! How did they do that? I think it is a matter of perspective.
We spent a long time in the Sistine Chapel. The Chapel, of course, contains the famous ceiling painted by Michelangelo. The masterpiece took him 4 years to complete and has many religious scenes: the creation being the most famous. There are some 300 different scenes depicted. The Chapel is also the site of the Conclave when the cardinals are sequestered to pick a new Pope.
On one of the walls is another painting by Michelangelo called, The Last Judgement. It is meant to depict the second coming of Christ and the judgement of souls. Among the tortured figures Michelangelo put a self-portrait.
Next we moved onto St. Peter's Basilica, so called because it is believed to be built over the site of the tomb of St. Peter, one of the 12 Apostles of Jesus.
There is a huge coppola under which is a bronze canopy over the main altar. Below this canopy there are many Popes burried--the last of which was Pope John Paul II.
Upon entering the Basilica, there is another masterpiece by Michelangelo, La Pieta, which is a sculpture depicting Mary holding the expired Christ. It is interesting to note that there are no paintings in the Basilica-anything that looked like a painting was actually a mosaic.
I'll continue Rome next time, so this does not get too lengthly! Thanks for staying with me!