BBB1547-2 [Castel Sant’ Angelo]
A late night shot of an ancient building that stands on the Tiber in the Vatican City for almost 2000 years. Built in 130 AD by the Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for himself and his family, it has also been used as barracks, papal fortress, medieval prison and since 1933 as a museum. Originally, it was called “Hadrian’s Mausoleum” but according to tradition at the end of the sixth century there was a procession led by the Pope Gregory (the Great) aiming to pray for the cease of an ongoing plague. When the procession arrived at the castle, people saw the Archangel Michael standing on the top of the castle and putting his sword into the scabbard. This gesture was interpreted as a sign that the plague would end soon which actually did end soon. Since then the castle is known as Castel Sant’ Angelo.
Rome 20/08/2009, photo © Tony Taglides