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st. peter's basilica by the numbers

Year construction began: 1506

Year it ended: 1626

Total years it took to build: 120

Number of popes who reigned during this time: 21

Age of Michelangelo when he took over as superintendent of the building program at St. Peter's: in his 70s

Cost to build: 46,800,052 ducats

Year Pope Pius XII announced, in a radio broadcast to the world, the discovery of St. Peter's tomb under the Basilica: 1950

Height of the letters inscribed in the dome, which read, TV ES PETRVS ET SVPER HANC PETRAM AEDIFICABO ECCLESIAM MEAM. TIBI DABO CLAVES REGNI CAELORVM (...you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church...I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven…): 2 meters

Number of tombs within the Basilica: over 100

Year the Basilica's oldest bell dates to: 1288

Length: 730 feet

Width: 500 feet

Height (max): 452 feet

Dome, diameter (outer): 137.7 feet

Total area covered: 5.7 acres (roughly 5 soccer fields)


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