The list of the smallest countries in the world, both in terms of area and population, is topped by the famous Vatican City. The country covers a total area of 0.44 square kilometers, which is even smaller than any average city in the world. Located as an independent city- State in Rome, it is also known as Holy See or the See of Rome. It is ruled by the Pope, who is not only the Bishop of Rome, but the highest authority of Catholic clergy men of differing national genesis.
Before the Church men arrived to this area, it was considered sanctified by the Romans and a chapel devoted to Goddess Cybele was built. A number of remains of burial grounds still remain, which were considered to be built opposite to the Circus of Nero, a well decorated garden and circus for charioteers. It was only during the Renaissance that the Christians and Church authority came into the scene. Vatican City has always served as a home to the Pope at the Apostolic Palace since a long time, dating back to 1377, demarcating the return of popes from Avignon, where a squabble between the French and the clergy men forced them to move to the new area. The country served as a hub for Christianity and has been under complete jurisdictional dominion of the Holy See that is the jurisdiction of the Catholic Church. The city was declared independent in the Treaty of Lateran, where the Roman emperor and the Holy See settled the matter of Roman Question. The city was then decided to be named after the Vatican Hill.
Within the perimeter of Vatican City lie numerous beautifully maintained gardens. These gardens were initiated during the tenure of the Romans, but continued to prosper and beautify throughout the period of Renaissance and Baroque era. The gardens adorned with hand-crafted sculptures and fountains. Vineyards and orchards date back to Roman Empire. The most famous attraction of the city- state which allures tourists from all over the world is St. Peter’s Basilica. The monument is a hub for architectural marvels and phenomenal paintings from artists like Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini, Bramante. The frescos of Sistine Chapel by Botticelli, Perugino and the splendid ceiling work depicting The Last Judgement by Michelangelo, is one of its kind. The artist has also created Pieta’ which is another infamous sculpt.
Vatican City has a huge library namely Vatican Apostolic Library is a huge collection of history, culture and science and has been of great literary value. Vatican museums have been declared and date registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, in the category of “International register of Cultural property under special protection”.
The infrastructure of Vatican City has been well maintained since ages. The city has not been famous just for its history, art work or culture, but also for the hospitality and love it shows to the people who visit the place. The beauty of the city remains closest to the hearts of those who have seen the country even once.