The Creation Wiki is made available by the NW Creation Network
Watch monthly live webcast - Like us on Facebook - Subscribe on YouTube

Vatican City

From CreationWiki, the encyclopedia of creation science
Jump to: navigation, search
Vatican City State
Stato della Città del Vaticano
Location of the Vatican City (green)
Location of the Vatican City (green)
CapitalVatican City
Official language(s) Italian
Government Absolute monarchy,[1] ecclesiastical[2] and elective monarchy[3] theocracy[4]
 -  Sovereign Francis
 -  Secretary of State Pietro Parolin
 -  President of the Governorate Giuseppe Bertello[5]
Legislature Pontifical Commission
 -  From Italy 11 February 1929 
 -  Total 0.44 km2 (251st)
0.17 sq mi 
 -  2014 estimate 690[2] (251st)
 -  Density 1877/km2 (6th)
4,859/sq mi
Currency Euro (€)[b] (EUR)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 -  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Drives on the Right
Internet TLD .va
Calling code 379

The Vatican City is a sovereign state that is entirely inside the city of Rome. It is the home of the Holy See, the main governing body of the Roman Catholic Church, and the residence of the Pope. It was recognized as an independent state in the 1929 Lateran Treaty with Italy.

The Vatican City is the smallest country in the world.[7] It has an area of 0.44 square kilometers, and as of 2014, a population of 690.[8][2] Citizenship is granted to Vatican officials, and in some cases, their spouses, and members of the Swiss Guard, who protect the pope.[9] Other people may be given permission to reside in the Vatican.[10]

The Vatican provides many of its own services, including a post office and legal system.[7] Criminal cases are tried by Italian courts.[7] The Vatican has diplomatic relations with other countries, but does not get involved in political affairs.[7]


Duchy of Rome

In the 7th century, Rome was weakly controlled by the Byzantine Empire, while much of the rest of the Italian peninsula was held by the Germanic Lombards. During this time, the pope began to assume more temporal power in the Duchy of Rome, although he was in competition with the Byzantine dux (duke).[11] The Byzantine exarchate and the pope both had roles in protecting Rome from the advances of the Lombards, although over time, the primary responsibility shifted to the latter.[11]

Papal States

The Papal States in 1700.

Between the 8th and 19th centuries, the pope held political control over Rome and much of the surrounding area. The territories he controlled were known as the Papal States and had an area of 16,000 square miles.[12]

The Papal States are understood to have started when the king of the Lombards gave the city of Sutri to the pope in 728.[13] In 751, the Lombards took over all Byzantine-held territories in Italy besides Rome.[14] As a result, the popes sought help from the Franks.[14] The Frankish king Pepin the Short expelled the Lombards from northern Italy and gave the former Byzantine territories to the pope. Charlemagne, Pepin's successor, later expanded the territory of the pope.

In 1305, Clement V was elected pope, and four years later, he moved the papcy to Avignon, France. In 1376, Pope Gregory XI returned the papcy to Rome. During this time, several dictators were granted authority over the Italian Papal States by the Church.

In 1860, King Victor Emmanuel II unified Italy, although the Church, protected by France, retained control over the city of Rome. In 1870, the French troops departed and Victor Emmanuel took the opportunity to seize Rome by force. The people of Rome subsequently voted to join Italy.

Lateran Treaty

After Rome was seized, the pope and his successors secluded themselves within the Vatican Palace. In 1929, Pope Pius XI negotiated the Lateran Treaty with Italy. In this treaty, the pope recognized Italy's control over the territory of the former Papal States and Italy allowed the establishment of a sovereign Vatican State.


  1. "Internet portal of Vatican City State". Vatican City State. Archived from the original on 24 May 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2011. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Holy See (Vatican City)". CIA—The World Factbook. Retrieved July 2014. 
  3. Gerhard Robbers (2006) Encyclopedia of World Constitutions. Infobase Publishing. ISBN 978-0-81606078-8. p. 1009
  4. Nick Megoran (2009) "Theocracy", p. 226 in International Encyclopedia of Human Geography, vol. 11, Elsevier ISBN 978-0-08-044911-1
  5. "Governorate". Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  6. Vatican City. On English Wikipedia. 2 May 2016. Accessed 8 May 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Peters, Edward. Is the Vatican really a country? Catholic Answers. Accessed 9 May 2016.
  8. Kuznetsova, Olga. Vatican City. Worldmark Encyclopedia of National Economies. 2002. Via
  9. Vatican City. New World Encyclopedia. 16 January 2016. Accessed 9 May 2016.
  10. "Population". Retrieved 9 May 2016. 
  11. 11.0 11.1 Wikipedia Contributors. "Duchy of Rome". English Wikipedia. Last modified 24 April 2016. Accessed 15 June 2016.
  12. "Papal States". In International Reference Work. New York: International Publishing Company. 1924.
  13. Wikipedia Contributors. "Donation of Sutri". English Wikipedia. Last modified 23 March 2016. Accessed 15 June 2016.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Wikipedia Contributors. "Papal States". English Wikipedia. Last modified 8 May 2016. Accessed 15 June 2016.