Basilica of Saint Peter in Chains
Basilica of Saint Peter in Chains (Basilica di San Pietro in Vincoli) is a must see basilica in Rome, which attracts art lovers and pilgrims from all over the world. This Roman Catholic Church is considered a minor basilica, but is well known for being the home of Michelangelo’s statue of Moses. Whether you are visiting to see the magnificent tomb for Pope Julius II or St Peter's chains, you will be in overwhelmed.
This basilica was built in the 5th century to house the large chains used to bind St Peter during his imprisonment. After his death, the chains were given to the bishop of Jerusalem who gave the chains to Eudoxia's mother; she decided that the correct place for them to be was in Rome. The chains were given as a gift to Pope Leo I, who placed them in the church for safe keeping.
Although the chains arrived as two separate chains, legend has it that when they were placed near to each other they joined. The fused chain is now kept in a stunning gold cabinet near the altar in the basilica and is one of the amazing things that people visit in Rome.
Within this church, there is also Julius' tomb, which has a phenomenal masterpiece in the center. Michelangelo's Moses stands with the two small horns protruding from his head, although these were believed to be a mistake.
The statues that are either side came after Michelangelo's death, and although work was ongoing the tomb has never been completed. There should have been over 40 statues on display, but the Sistine Chapel took all of his time and effort, causing this basilica to be forgotten.
Address Piazza di San Pietro in Vincoli, 4/a, 00184, Rome,Italy
Opening hours From 08.00 to 12.30 and from 15.00 to 19.00
Public transportation Metro Line B - Station Cavour, buses