Castel Sant'Angelo, Rome

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  • Castel Sant'Angelo by night
    Castel Sant'Angelo by night
    by aukahkay
  • View from the Terrace
    View from the Terrace
    by tim07
  • View from the Terrace
    View from the Terrace
    by tim07
  • manuna's Profile Photo

    Sant Angelo at night

    by manuna Written Jan 15, 2014

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    As I notice it's becoming more and more popular to open an access to some sights at night, at least in summer time. And this is great experience! Firstly, there are less visitors. Secondly, night magic makes its work and adds a magic spell on the monuments...
    I would recommend to book tickets in advance via internet to avoid queue at the entrance.
    It is possible to join an excursion but we decided to explore the castle by ourselves. And we were surprised. It was announced that the excursion takes 45 minutes. We spent 2,5 hours (and we hardly noticed it ) and we didn't stop to listen to the night concert that was held in the attrium.

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    Papal Apartments, Museum & Views.

    by breughel Updated Dec 14, 2013

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    Angel and antenna !

    Reaching level 4 and 5, I felt much more impressed by the views on Rome than by the papal apartments or the small military museum. For sure the rooms are magnificent with the frescoes and of course the prisons and torture chamber are there to remember that the popes had also a secular authority.

    What impressed me really were the views as well from the covered terraces as from the upper panoramic terrace under the statue of the angel. There is even a small café on one of the terraces.
    What desolated me is that somebody felt clever to put an antenna just behind the bronze statue of the archangel Michael. I don't know if my compatriot Pieter Verschaffelt who made this statue is happy with that horrible antenna!?
    Actually this Flemish sculptor lived in Rome from 1737 till 1752 where a created other works and was called Pietro Il Fiamingo. Later he worked in Mannheim.

    But there are the views. From here you can really see that the Quirinal Palace is on a hill, and that the Vittoriano dominates all Rome. It's evident that Rome has hundred of churches with cupolas and very few bell towers. From here you can also distinguish how imposing is the dome of the Pantheon. To the right the most imposing dome of them all St Peters.
    I can't understand how Tosca could throw herself from this terrace with such a wonderful view… ah, l'Amore!

    Open (2013): Tuesday to Sunday 9 - 19.30 h. Closed on Monday.
    Price: ordinary 10,50 €; reduced 7 € for EU citizens 18 - 15 yr. Free for EU citizens less than 18 and more than 65 years old.

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    The Fortress.

    by breughel Updated Dec 14, 2013

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    Castel Sant'Angelo - The fortress
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    The mausoleum started its transformation to a fortress when it was included into the Aurelian wall and became a "castellum". In 537 when the Visigoths attacked Rome it proved its value. The defenders used the bronze statues as projectiles. Over the centuries the defensive role of the fortress grew in importance as it controlled the northern route to the city and got linked by the fortified area of the Borgo to the Vatican palaces. The prominent Roman families disputed its possession until the castle became a defensive place for the Pope.
    The spiral ramp and the atrium were closed and a new entrance was opened with a drawbridge.

    A square wall called "Marcia Ronda" with bastions at the corners called after the four evangelists was constructed. A moat was created around the walls. Inside the cylindrical body a diametrical ramp was built which leads to the second level with the room of the urns, the silos and to the third level called "Giretto Coperto" or Covered Tower. The main courtyard at this third level is called "Cortille dell'Angelo" because here was found the statue of the archangel Michael who decorated the top of the castle until 1747.
    Here is the entrance to the papal apartments. There is another courtyard "Cortille d'Alessandro VI" showing a replica (?) of a catapult.

    Open : Tuesday to Sunday 9 - 19.30 h. Closed on Monday.
    Price (2013): ordinary 10,50 €; reduced 7 € for EU citizens 18 - 15 yr. Free for EU citizens less than 18 and more than 65 years old.
    Photos allowed without tripod or flash.

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    Hadrian's Mausoleum.

    by breughel Updated Dec 14, 2013

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    Hadrian Mausoleum - Spiral ramp.
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    From all fortified castles I have seen in Europe this is certainly the most extraordinary, if not extravagant, fortress I have visited.
    It started with a mausoleum to Emperor Hadrian (117 - 138 AD) and contained also the funerary urns of his successors Antonius Pius, Marc-Aurelius, Commode and Septime Severus and Caracalla.
    The mausoleum of Hadrian was probably similar to that of the emperor August of which a ruin subsists. The mausoleum has a square base of 84 m side, about 15 m high, surmounted by a cylindrical part with a diameter of 64 m and 20 m high. The cylinder was decorated with travertine and bronze statues at the basement.
    The upper part of this cylinder was probably finished as a garden around a small temple. On top the statue of the emperor on a quadriga as shown on the models (photo 2 & 3).
    From the outside some blocks of peperino, a volcanic stone, of the mole which once supported the outer casing is all that remains visible. The rest is covered by the fortification works from the later periods.
    The inner part subsisting from the mausoleum is the one by which the visit starts at the first level. The monumental entrance was only discovered in 1825, the visit starts with the Roman Atrium with its huge niche intended for a statue of Emperor Hadrian and the spectacular spiral ramp.
    At the origin this ramp with travertine walls, 3 m wide, 6 m high, was making a full turn inside the cylinder of the mausoleum and was decorated with marble, mosaics and stuccos.
    When in 271 AD the mausoleum of Hadrian was included in the fortification wall of Emperor Aurelian it lost its function and became the strongest fortress of Rome.

    Open : Tuesday to Sunday 9 - 19.30 h. Closed on Monday.
    Price (2013): ordinary 10,50 €; reduced 7 € for EU citizens 18 - 15 yr. Free for EU citizens less than 18 and more than 65 years old.

    Photos allowed without tripod or flash.

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  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo

    Castel S'Angelo

    by Jim_Eliason Updated Dec 7, 2013

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    Castel S'Angelo
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    Built originally as the mausoleum for the Emporer Hadrian, this was converted into a fortress in the Middle ages which has served until modern times. Admission is 5 euros and besides the castle itself the upper levels give great views of St. Peters and the rest of Rome.

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  • GracesTrips's Profile Photo

    Castel Sant' Angelo is close to Vatican City

    by GracesTrips Updated Sep 27, 2013

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    There is quite a bit to see in Rome but if you have a chance to see Castel Sant' Angelo, it is well worth the "look see". Great views of the city and you can have a "tour" of it but that probably isn't necessary. Save your money for tours of the Vatican and the Colosseum.

    Admission is €8 for adults. April to September 9am-7pm, October to March 9am-2pm. Closed on public holidays. We did not have to wait in line for our visit.

    Some tidbits about Castel Sant' Angelo:

    Roman Emperor Hadrian built it as a mausoleum for himself and his family. The building was later used by the popes as a fortress and castle.

    I couldn't find an official website so the link below is from wikipedia.

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  • gwened's Profile Photo

    Castel Sant' Angelo

    by gwened Written Aug 24, 2013
    castel sant angelo entrance
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    a wonderful castle right by the river Tibre, a must see even a museum and gardens around it, with great shopping in stands in the gardens.
    a bit of history
    Built during the emperor Hadrian in 135AD to be his mausoleum, the building is the counterpart of the tomb of Augustus. It is completed by Antoninus Pius in 139AD. The Castle, a massive Rotunda covered with travertine marble, is surmounted by a Quadriga bronze led the emperor Hadrian in sunlight and a grove of funeral trees. Hadrian's ashes were deposited in 139AD. Caracalla was the last emperor to be bury. It is integrated into the Aurelian wall in 403AD.

    The Castle takes its present name from a legend appeared in the 9th century, about the great plague of 590. The Pope then Grégoire Ier, had an apparition of the Archangel Michael at the top of the Castle, handing his sword to the scabbard, thus signifying the end of the epidemic. In fact, the legend explains retrospectively the presence of a chapel dedicated to the Archangel by Boniface IV in the 7th century. The castle is transformed into prison, where four of the popes of the 9th century were killed. The Castle then passes to the powerful 'family' of the Crescenzi ("castellum Crescentii"). It is there in 998, Crescentius Nomentanus barricade against the onslaught of Otto III - in vain, as he was beheaded on the platform of the Citadel. During the long struggle between the Pope and the Emperor, the castle became a refuge for Popes. Gregory VII is entrenched in 1083 to resist to Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor, and in 1227, Nicolas III built a corridor suspended connecting the castle to the Vatican, thus providing a possibility of quick escape. When urban V from Avignon return to Rome, he is given back not the keys to the city but those of the Castle, which reprises his role of fortress protecting the Vatican. The arrangements at the castle allow Alexandre VI of taken refuge when Rome was occupied by the King of France Charles VIII in 1494 (first war of Italy) and Clement VII to resist six months at headquarters of the lansquenets of Charles Quint during the terrible sacking of Rome in 1527. At the same time, Castle does not lose his status of prison. Until the 19th century, the Castle towards the papacy from political prison (Marco Antonio de Dominis (1624), Niccolò Cosciaen (1733), etc.).On July 21, 1871, the pontifical flag is brought down for the last time by the Papal troops, under the eyes of the Italian army, which took possession of the place.

    Restored at the beginning of the 20th century, the Castle of san angelo now houses a museum since 1925 of paintings and military armor. The Apollo room, decorated with frescoes by Perin del Vaga (1547);the room of Clement VII (paintings from the 15th and 16th centuries);the Loggia of Paul III, painted by Antonio da Sangallo the younger.the Loggia of Julius II from 1504;Paul III Farnèse apartments, decorated between 1542 and 1549 Mannerist frescoes which:Salle Pauline decorated of the life of Alexander the great of Marco Pino;the room of the Adrianeum which houses the Bacchanalia of Dosso Dossi;the room of garlands, Saint Jerome of Lorenzo Lotto.

    Huge and beautiful.

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  • IreneMcKay's Profile Photo

    Catel St Angelo.

    by IreneMcKay Updated Jan 5, 2013

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    Castel St Angelo.

    I believe it was originally built as the tomb of Hadrian then later became a fortress. There is supposed to be a tunnel to here from the Vatican. At any rate it is a lovely sight on the River Tiber. It was built in the second century and is now a museum.

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    Castel Sant'Angelo

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jul 1, 2012

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    Castel Sant'Angelo
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    The Mausoleum of Hadrian, usually known as the Castel Sant'Angelo (Castle of the Holy Angel), is a towering cylindrical building in Parco Adriano. It was initially commissioned by the Roman Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for himself and his family. The building was later used by the popes as a fortress and castle, and is now a museum.
    Opening hours: April-September 9am-7pm
    October-March 9am-2pm
    Admission fee:
    Adults €8, Reduced ticket €6
    (last admission 1hr before closing time), closed on public holidays.

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  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Castello Sant' Angelo

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 11, 2011

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    castello Sant'Angelo
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    The magnificent bridge Ponte Sant'Angelo (once called Ponte Elio), across the River of Tevere, lead to the castle of the same name. The bridge was built by Hadrian, around 130 AD, together with mausoleum which later on become Castel Sant'Angelo. The bridge is adorned by a double row of angels, work of Bernini followers.
    Not much was left of Hadrian's tomb which, at its time, was the most splendid example of Roman architecture, together with the Colosseum. Around 5th century it was fortified and incorporeted into the city walls, defending the western bank of the Tevere. Later on, in the 10th century, this fortification was transformed into a castle. The Pope Nicholas III joined it into the Vatican by the famous "passetto" (passageway). During control of the popes the castle was used as a fortress but also as a prison and place of torture.
    The castle is steeped in memories of bloodshead and crime!

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  • Arizona_Girl's Profile Photo

    Worth walking Bridge

    by Arizona_Girl Written May 19, 2011

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    Angel on the bridge
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    We didn't have time to take the tour inside while on our way to the Vatican. But we made a point to walk across the bridge and see all the statues. They are so majestic. Don't miss this opportunity, route your walk though the city so you can enjoy this bridge. Also great place to take a picture of the Vatican (Saint Peter's) from a distance.

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  • sikorka's Profile Photo

    Take a walk as if you were Pope

    by sikorka Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Castel Sant'Angelo
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    When you'll visit Rome in the summer, between the 29th June and the 15th August do not forget to take a chance and walk along the Passetto di Borgo, the corridor linking Vatican Palaces to Castel Sant'Angelo. Usually it's closed and re-open only for a few weeks during the summer.
    Unfortunately, the guests are not able to walk the whole distance, but only the first 400m, but still it's unforgettable to walk at night the way Pope used to do it. While walking you have a great view on the Basilica St. Peter and surrounding streets.

    An entrance ticket to Castel Sant'Angelo costs 10 E and + an extra ticket 2 E for being able to walk along the corridor.

    It's worth the price because all the evening there are different shows and live performances for adults and children.

    Please note that there is a restaurant on one of the terraces and two bars.

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  • jungles's Profile Photo

    Mausoleum, fortress, prison, and museum

    by jungles Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Image from freefoto.com

    The building known as Castel Sant'Angelo has been many things throughout history. It was originally built in 139 A.D. as a mausoleum for the emperor Hadrian and his family. The ashes of later emperors were also placed here. It looked much different then, with a garden and many beautiful statues covering the top of the mound. In 401 A.D., however, it was turned into a military fortress and incorporated into the Aurelian walls. Just nine years later Rome was sacked by Alaric's Visigoths, and the statues were used as weapons and thrown down on the enemy. It was later used by many popes as a fortress. In the 14th century the passetto was built, which is a passageway that connects the castle to the Vatican, so that the pope could escape if the Vatican was beseiged. This is exactly what did happen during the infamous sack of Rome in 1527, and the castle became the refuge of Pope Clement VII. It was also used as a prison; Giordano Bruno was held here for six years before he was executed.

    The present name of the building refers to the sculpture of the archangel Michael seen on top. In 590 A.D. Rome was struck by the plague. According to traditional belief, Pope Gregory the Great led a procession through the city asking God to end the plague, and when the procession reached the mausoleum (as it was then) the pope saw a vision of the angel sheathing his sword on top of the building. This signified that the plague was finished.

    The castle is now open as a museum. In summer it is also open at night for special entertainment. A restaurant and bar are set up on the terrace above and live shows and performances take place. More information is available on the website.

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  • mindcrime's Profile Photo

    Castel Sant' Angelo

    by mindcrime Written Mar 20, 2011

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    Castel Sant' Angelo
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    Emperor Hadrian built the Castel Sant’Angelo (pics 1-2) because he wanted a big impressive building as mausoleum. It was completed in 193AD many years after emperor’s death(138AD). At the beginning it was called Hadrianeum but Pope Gregory the Great had a vision in 590 (an angel with a sword over the mausoleum!) and they changed the name because it was supposed to a sign(the end of the plague of that era). Piet van Verschaffelt made the sculpture of Archangel Michael in 1753, which tops the castle.

    It has been a fortress, for some years a prison but also Popes’ hiding place (they were using the passeto, a long corridon that was built to connect the castle with the Vatican). In our days the castel Sant’Angelo is a museum but most of the visitor go there for the nice view from the upper platform but we were already tired from the Vatican visit so we just took pictures of it, most of them from Ponte Sant Angelo(pic 4) which is located in front of the castle, a beautiful pedestrian bridge that was built in 134AD. It is full of statues(pic 3) showing Saints Peter and Paul but also 10 statues of angels that were added later by Bernini.

    We enjoyed the view from the bridge (pic 5), some last romantic pictures of us and we were off back to the city centre

    The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday 9.00-19.00 and the entrance fee is 5euro

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  • June.b's Profile Photo

    Castel Sant'Angelo

    by June.b Written Jun 24, 2010

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    a.k.a. The Mausoleum of Hadrian is that round building or tower located near the vatican, on the side of the Tiber river. Walk along the Via della Conziliazone which is the street on the entrance of vatican and you'll end up at this round building.

    The Roman Emperor Hadrian have it built as a mausoleum to house his and his family remains in 123AD. The ashed of Emperor Hadrian were palced here when he died in 138, along with his wife and his adopted son, and so are other emperor's ashes. The mausoleum became a military frotress in 401, then a castle in 14th century, then as a prison, finally in 1901 the convertion to a museum was started.

    The present name derived from the legend about the appearance of the Archangel Michael on top of the mausoleum which was considered as a sign of the end of the plague in the year 590.

    That's the reason why I've seen a lots of statues of angels along the bridge fronting this round building.

    If you have seen the movie "Angels & Demons" (Tom Hanks), they shot a portion of the movie here.

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