Religion: St. Peter's Tomb?

St. Peter's Tomb

For ten years, beneath the towering immensity of St. Peter's basilica in Rome, the Vatican's hereditary corps of workmen, the Sampietrini, have been painstakingly excavating a city of the dead. First discovered during the preparation of a tomb for Pope Pius XI in February 1939, this labyrinth of ancient Roman and early Christian sepulchres has been unearthed, often with bare hands, from the soil with which it was filled by Constantine before he built the first St. Peter's (begun in 323 A.D.).

The excavations and the archeological finds have not yet been...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!