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Vatican City State
Stato della Città del Vaticano
|Official languages||Italian[note 1]|
absolute monarchy; elective monarchy; elective theocracy.
|Independence from the Kingdom of Italy|
|11 February 1929|
|44 ha (110 acres) (250th)|
• July 2013 estimate
|1,877/km2 (4,861.4/sq mi) (6th)|
Vatican City (i//; officially Vatican City State, Italian: Stato della Città del Vaticano) is a sovereign state in the city of Rome. It is an enclave surrounded by Italy. It is the smallest state in the world at 0.44 km². It was created on 11 February 1929, with the Lateran Agreement (Patti Lateranensi). This was signed by Benito Mussolini and Pope Pius XI. The Vatican City is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church and its government, the Holy See.
The Head of State is the Pope, now Pope Francis, former cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, was elected on 13 March 2013. It is also important for its culture and art. The Vatican's masterpieces are very well known in the world: St. Peter's Square, St. Peter's Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, the Vatican Museums and the Apostolic Palace, where the Pope lives. There are also hundreds of other sculptures and pictures.
The Pope used to rule the Papal States. This used to cover all of Central Italy. Popes had always tried to stop Italy becoming one country because they might lose their control of the Papal States. In 1861 Italy was unified under the King of Savoy, but Rome and Latium remained unconquered. Only on 20 September 1870 the Italian troops invaded and beat the Papal troops. Rome became capital of the new kingdom.
In 1929 Benito Mussolini decided to sign an agreement with the Holy See, called the Lateran Treaty, which created the Vatican State. Another treaty gave the Vatican money each year to compensate for the lost territories.
Politics and Government
The state religion of the city is the Roman Catholic Church.
- "Internet portal of Vatican City State". Vatican City State. http://www.vaticanstate.va/EN/State_and_Government/StateDepartments/index.htm. Retrieved 9 July 2011.
- Gerhard Robbers, Encyclopedia of World Constitutions (Infobase Publishing 2006 ISBN 978-0-81606078-8), p. 1009
- Nick Megoran, "Theocracy" in International Encyclopedia of Human Geography, vol. 11, Elsevier 2009 ISBN 978-0-08-044911-1, p.226| Quote:elective theocracy (although its representatives would be unlikely to accept that label)
- ITU-T assigned code 379 to Vatican City. However, Vatican City is included in the Italian telephone numbering plan and uses the Italian country code 39, followed by 06 (for Rome) and 698.
- www.vatican.va Holy See Press Office — General Information. Retrieved 23 October 2009.
- "Stato della Città del Vaticano" is the name used in the text of the state's Fundamental Law and in the state's official website.
- In accordance with paragraph 2 of the Legge sulle fonti del diritto of 7 June 1929, all laws and regulations of the state are published in the Italian language Supplemento per le leggi e disposizioni dello Stato della Città del Vaticano attached to the Acta Apostolicae Sedis. The text of the first seven items published in that supplement is given here. While the state itself uses only Italian, many other languages are used by institutions situated within the state, such as the Holy See, the Pontifical Swiss Guard, and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.
The Holy See uses Latin as an official language and French as a diplomatic language; in addition, its Secretariat of State uses English, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese and Spanish. The Swiss Guard, in which commands on parade are given in German, also uses French and Italian in all its official ceremonies.
- Visitors and tourists are not permitted to drive inside the Vatican without specific permission, which is normally granted only to those who have business with some office in the Vatican.