Friday, March 17, 2006


I've been to Rome twice now, and although I've heard of the legendary "Scavi Tour" I've never had the opportunity to go on it. For those who've never heard of it, the Scavi Tour is a tour of the excavations that were done in the 1930's underneath St. Peter's Basilica. St. Peter's was built upon the same spot as the previous basilica, which had been built by the emperor Constantine on the location of a Christian burial grounds right over the spot where pilgrims had been venerating what was believed to be the very grave of St. Peter himself, who tradition tells us was martyred by way of an upside-down crucifixion. Hence the archaeological significance of the place, and the desire to excavate and see what was really under there.

Amy Welborn has a nice synopsis of the tour, which she recently experienced.

From her recollection comes this little tidbit which illustrates the very reason why the next time I travel to Rome I will not miss out on this opportunity again...!

And at the end of the tour, you can see, at a safe distance, and from a certain angle - the edge of the trophy, the corner of Constantine's altar and other structure, and then, turning a corner, some clear plastic boxes which contain human remains - the bones that were found - every part of a human being except the feet, giving credence to the legend that Peter's body was removed from his cross in haste, only by cutting off the feet, and in turn lending credence to the strong possibility that this was, indeed Peter.

Update: Amy posted a clarification on St. Peter's bones. It doesn't change the fact that I still want to go...!


Post a Comment

<< Home