Rome is the city with the highest concentration of historical and architectural riches in the world. Its historical centre, outlined by the enclosing Aurelian Walls, layering nearly three thousand years of antiquity, is an invaluable testimony to the European western world’s cultural, artistic and historical legacy and in 1980 it was, together with the Holy See’s property beyond the confines of the Vatican State as well as the Basilica of St. Paul outside the Walls, were added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List .
Rome, the heart of Catholic Christianity, is the only city in the world to host an entire foreign state within its confines, the enclave of the Vatican City, and it is for this very reason that it is often referred to as the capital of two States.
Over 16% of the world’s cultural treasures are located in Rome (70% in all of Italy).


With around 52 thousand hectares of agricultural land, Rome is Europe’s greenest city. As well as its public parks, Rome boasts a great deal more greenery, as well as agriculture on its outskirts. The protected zones cover 40 thousand hectares. Rome is Europe’s largest agricultural municipality with 517 square metres of agriculture accounting for 40% of its total surface.


In addition to the municipal emblem, there is the Capitoline wolf, the bronze statue depicting the legendary she-wolf suckling the twins Romulus and Remus; the Colosseum, ancient Rome’s largest amphitheatre, which was also listed in 2007 as one of the seven wonders of the modern world (the only one in Europe); the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, dominating the entire city and symbolizing Christianity. The symbol of the city in antiquity was the military effigy of an imperial eagle, while in the Middle Ages it was a lion, denoting supremacy.

* URBE : in ancient times the word Urbs was automatically used to mean Rome itself.
* CAPUT MUNDI : capital of the world
* URBE AETERNA : The Eternal City

Traditionally, Rome was built on seven hills, the names of which were lost over the passing of time, leaving historians slightly in doubt. However the city’s ancient heart is comprised of the historical seven hills: Palatine, Aventine, Capitoline, Quirinal, Viminal, Esquiline and Caelian.


The Blond Tiber is the river god once referred to in the elegies of ancient Rome, a god demanding respect and love which is indeed how, in a certain sense, it has remained in the minds of Romans. Over time however, they have lost contact with the river flowing through the city between the left bank, the historic centre, and the right, which was one time called the suburbs.


  • 21st April, Rome’s Christmas, celebrating, in costume, with cultural events and festivities, the date traditionally believed to be when Romulus founded the city (753 A.D.).
  • 1st May, Labour Day. The three main unions together organize a free concert in Piazza Porta San Giovanni which annually attracts an audience of hundreds of thousands (1,000,000 in 2008).
  • 2nd June, Republic Day. A military parade traditionally marches down Via dei Fori Imperiali to Piazza Venezia.
  • Festa de Noantri. One of the city’s oldest festivals is held in Trastevere on the first Saturday after 16th July on the Feast of the “Madonna del Carmelo”..

The territory of Vatican City is part of the Mons Vaticanus (Vatican Hill), and of the adjacent former Vatican Fields, where St. Peter's Basilica, the Apostolic Palace, the Sistine Chapel, and museums were built, along with various other buildings. The area was part of the Roman rione of Borgo until 1929. Being separated from the city on the west bank of the Tiber river, the area was an outcrop of the city that was protected by being included within the walls of Leo IV, later expanded by the current fortification walls of Paul III/Pius IV/Urban VIII.
When the Lateran Treaty of 1929 that gave the state its present form was being prepared, the boundaries of the proposed territory was influenced by the fact that much of it was all but enclosed by this loop. For some tracts of the frontier, there was no wall, but the line of certain buildings supplied part of the boundary, and for a small part of the frontier a modern wall was constructed.
The territory includes Saint Peter's Square, separated from the territory of Italy only by a white line along the limit of the square, where it touches Piazza Pio XII. St. Peter's Square is reached through the Via della Conciliazione, which runs from the Tiber River to St. Peter's. This grand approach was constructed byBenito Mussolini after the conclusion of the Lateran Treaty. According to the Lateran Treaty, certain properties of the Holy See that are located in Italian territory, most notably the Papal Palace of Castel Gandolfo and the major basilicas, enjoy extraterritorial status similar to that of foreign embassies.





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