Vatican City in History

Historical Events


Event of interestEvent of Interest

0800-12-01 Charlemagne judges the accusations against Pope Leo III in the Vatican.

Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne
Holy Roman Emperor
Charlemagne
  • 1483-08-09 Opening of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican
  • 1506-01-22 The first contingent of 150 Swiss Guards arrive at the Vatican

Papal VisitSt. Peter's Basilica

1506-04-18 The cornerstone of the current St. Peter's Basilica is laid in the Vatican by Pope Julius II
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St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City, Rome
St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City, Rome

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1512-11-01 Michelangelo's paintings on ceiling of Sistine Chapel in the Vatican first exhibited

Sculptor and Painter Michelangelo
Sculptor and Painter
Michelangelo
  • 1541-10-31 Michelangelo Buonarroti finishes painting "The Last Judgement" in the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City
  • 1593-01-27 Vatican opens 7 year trial against scholar Giordano Bruno
  • 1600-02-08 Vatican convicts scholar Giordano Bruno to death

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1633-06-22 Galileo Galilei forced to recant his Copernican views that the Earth orbits the Sun by the Pope (Vatican only admits it was wrong on Oct 31, 1992!)

Astronomer and Physicist Galileo Galilei
Astronomer and Physicist
Galileo Galilei
  • 1869-12-08 20th Roman Catholic ecumenical council, Vatican I, opens in Rome
  • 1904-05-21 France recalls its ambassador to the Vatican to protest the Pope's attempt to discipline two French bishops; this is yet another incident driving France and the Catholic Church apart
  • 1914-01-26 Vatican puts Belgian Nobel winner Maeterlinck's works in their index
  • 1922-05-30 Latvia & Vatican sign accord
  • 1922-09-29 Benito Mussolini ask Vatican for support of fascist party program
  • 1924-03-29 Bavaria & Vatican reach accord
  • 1926-12-29 Vatican puts French fascist Charles Maurras' work on the index

  • 1929-02-11 Vatican City (world's smallest country) made an enclave of Rome
  • 1929-06-07 Vatican City becomes a sovereign state
  • 1929-06-14 Prussia and Vatican sign Concord
  • 1929-06-29 Mexico & Vatican sign Concord
  • 1929-07-07 Romania & Vatican sign concord
  • 1930-12-04 Vatican approves rhythm method for birth control
  • 1931-02-12 Vatican Radio begins broadcasting with the callsign HVJ

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1933-07-20 Vatican state secretary Pacelli (Pius XII) signs accord with Adolf Hitler

Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler
Dictator of Nazi Germany
Adolf Hitler

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1938-05-03 Vatican recognizes Franco-Spain

Spanish Dictator and General Francisco Franco
Spanish Dictator and General
Francisco Franco
  • 1939-03-12 Pope Pius XII crowned in Vatican ceremonies
  • 1943-09-10 German troops occupy Rome and take took over the protection of Vatican City
  • 1943-11-05 Vatican in Rome bombed by unknown source
  • 1944-08-16 Dutch begin diplomatic contact with Vatican in London
  • 1950-10-30 Pope Pius XII witnesses "The Miracle of the Sun" while at the Vatican
  • 1953-07-27 Vatican disallows priest holiday work in factory

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1959-01-25 Pope John XXIII proclaims 2nd Vatican council

  • 1959-04-13 Vatican edict forbids Roman Catholics from voting for communists
  • 1962-10-11 Second Vatican Council (21st ecumenical) convened by Pope John XXIII
  • 1963-09-29 2nd session of Ecumenical council, `Vatican II,' opened in Rome by Pope Paul

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1963-12-04 Pope Paul VI closes 2nd session of 2nd Vatican Council

Pope Paul VI
Pope
Paul VI
  • 1964-09-13 3rd sitting of 2nd Vatican council opens in Rome
  • 1964-11-21 Pope Paul VI signs 3rd sitting of 2nd Vatican council
  • 1965-09-14 4th meeting of 2nd Vatican council opened
  • 1965-12-08 Pope Paul VI signs 2nd Vatican council
  • 1968-03-01 Vatican City's Apostolic Constitution of 1967 goes into effect
  • 1968-12-16 Official revocation of the Edict of Expulsion of Jews from Spain at Second Vatican Council

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1973-01-15 Pope Paul VI holds an audience with Golda Meir at the Vatican

4th Prime Minister of Israel Golda Meir
4th Prime Minister of Israel
Golda Meir
Pope Paul VI
Pope
Paul VI

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1981-01-15 Pope John Paul II receives Lech Wałęsa and Solidarity delegation at the Vatican

Polish Politician and Labor Activist Lech Wałęsa
Polish Politician and Labor Activist
Lech Wałęsa
264th Pope John Paul II
264th Pope
John Paul II

MurderAssassination Attempt

1981-05-13 Pope John Paul II is shot and critically wounded by Turkish gunman Mehemet Ali Agca in St Peter's Square, Vatican City

264th Pope John Paul II
264th Pope
John Paul II
  • 1982-05-12 In Fatima Portugal, a Spanish Traditionalist priest who opposed Vatican II reforms and saw Pope John Paul II as a perpetrator of them, is stopped prior to his attempt to attack the Pope with a bayonet
  • 1982-06-07 US President Ronald Reagan meets with Pope John Paul II at Vatican City, Rome and later Queen Elizabeth II
  • 1984-01-10 US re-establishes full diplomatic relations with Vatican after almost 117 years
  • 1984-02-18 Revised concordat between Italy & Vatican signed
  • 1987-03-10 Vatican formal opposition to test-tube fertilization & embryo transfer
  • 1989-12-01 USSR President Mikhail Gorbachev meets Pope John Paul II at the Vatican

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1989-12-24 Panama's dictator, Manual Noriega, seeks asylum at Vatican embassy

Panamanian General and Dictator Manuel Noriega
Panamanian General and Dictator
Manuel Noriega
  • 1993-07-27 Mafia bombs historical buildings in Rome, Milan and Vatican City, 5 killed
  • 1993-12-30 Vatican recognizes Israel
  • 1994-04-07 Vatican commemorates The Holocaust for the first time with an orchestral concert in the Sala Nervi
  • 1997-12-24 1st time a Channukah candle is officially lit in Vatican City
  • 2002-04-23 Pope John Paul II meets with U.S. Catholic Church leaders at Vatican regarding sexual abuse of minors
  • 2012-04-12 Bodleian, Oxford University and Vatican libraries announce over 1.5 million pages of ancient texts will be made available across the internet

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2013-02-27 Pope Benedict XVI presents his farewell address to Vatican City

265th Pope Benedict XVI
265th Pope
Benedict XVI

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2014-02-24 Pope Francis creates a second Secretariat with the power to audit any Vatican agency at any time

  • 2015-09-01 Pope Francis tells priests to pardon women who have had an abortion, in a letter released by the Vatican

BeatificationCanonization

2016-09-04 Mother Teresa canonized by Pope Francis in a ceremony at the Vatican

Catholic Missionary Mother Teresa
Catholic Missionary
Mother Teresa
Pope Pope Francis
Pope
Pope Francis
  • 2017-05-23 US President Donald Trump meets Pope Francis at the Vatican
  • 2017-06-29 Vatican treasurer Cardinel George Pell charged with historic sexual offences in Victoria, Australian

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2017-12-14 The Vatican announces it has rediscovered the lost last paintings of Raphael in Vatican Museum, painted 1520

Painter and Architect Raphael
Painter and Architect
Raphael
  • 2018-08-16 Pope Francis and the Vatican issues statement in support of the 300 victims of "predator priests" in Pennsylvania
  • 2018-08-26 Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, former US Vatican Ambassador, claims Pope Francis knew of and ignored sex abuse allegations against Cardinal Theodore McCarrick

Famous Birthdays

  • 1845-10-17 Franz Ehrle, German prefect of Vatican library
  • 1860-09-07 Willem Hubert Nolens, Dutch priest and ambassador to Vatican, born in Venlo (d. 1931)
  • 1884-07-18 Alberto di Jorio, Italian Cardinal and former head of the Vatican Bank, born in Rome (d. 1979)
  • 1911-07-02 Diego Fabbri, Italian playwright and leader (Vatican movie bureau), born in Forli, Italy (d. 1980)

Famous Weddings

  • 2006-11-04 Croatian princess Paola Doimi de Frankopan (37) weds son of the Duke and Duchess of Kent Lord Nicholas Windsor (37) at St. Stephen of Abyssina in Vatican City
  • 2010-06-26 "American Beauty" actress Mena Suvari (31) weds concert producer Simone Sestito (25) at Santo Stefano degli Abissini in Vatican City, Italy

Famous Deaths

  • 1931-08-27 Willem Hubert Nolens, Dutch priest and ambassador to Vatican, dies at 70
  • 1934-03-31 Franz Ehrle, German jesuit/head of Vatican library, dies at 88
  • 1979-09-05 Alberto di Jorio, Italian Cardinal and former head of the Vatican Bank, dies at 95
  • 1992-07-03 Marc Tannenbaum, rabbi (only Jew to attend Vatican II), dies at 66
  • 1995-03-13 P C J van Lierde, Dutch vicar-gen of Vatican (1951-91), dies at 87