25 September 2022 The Future is the Product of the Past

According to researchers, the bones discovered underneath St. Peter’s Basilica may not be his

Three Italian researchers have voiced doubts about whether St. Peter’s bones are buried underneath the Rome basilica that bears his name.

According to research, the bones of St. Peter may have been interred in catacombs underneath the Mausoleum of St. Helena after being relocated from the Vatican hillside during anti-Christian persecutions in the third century.

The researchers called their findings “conjecture,” but said archaeologists could “validate” them with “excavation campaigns.” However, a leading Christian archaeologist and member of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology told Vatican News that the researchers’ hypothesis was “unacceptable.”

“The most accepted opinion is that Peter’s remains were moved in one of the Roman catacombs,” they write in “The Search of St. Peter’s Memory ad catacombs in the Cemeterial Area ad Duos Lauros in Rome.” But “archaeological evidence seems to exclude” the common hypothesis that St. Peter’s remains were kept “for a certain period” in the catacombs on Via Appia.

The purpose of our study is to research Peter’s memory ad catacombs. According to the Depositio Martyrum—a document of the late Emperor Constantine period—there was no memory of the first St. Peter’s Basilica on the Vatican Hill. We start with a critical analysis on the Roman Basilica attributed to Emperor Constantine in Liber Pontificalis, then we deepen the search of Peter’s memory in the catacombs of the Sts. Marcellinus and Peter (ad Duos Lauros), also known as Tor Pignattara. Indeed, the basilica and mausoleum built in this cemeterial area are the only buildings attributable, with certainty, to Emperor Constantine, who wished to be buried in the mausoleum, close to an apostle. Besides some striking archeological finds on Peter’s memory already discovered near a particular cubicle in these catacombs, a geometrical and mathematical study of the unusual architectonic characteristics of the basilica and mausoleum of Tor Pignattara shows that the buildings were part of a single architectonic plan, very likely designed for coding data useful to locate Peter’s burial site unambiguously, in the area of the cubicle mentioned.

Vatican
St Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City | Pixabay

Vincenzo Fiocchi Nicolai, an expert in Christian archaeology and a member of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology, however, told Vatican News that the researchers’ hypothesis was “unacceptable.”

Fiocchi Nicolai said that Emperor Constantine would never have built St. Peter’s Basilica in the 4th century “if it had not been contingent upon the presence of the venerated remains” below. That is the spot where St. Peter was martyred and where his tomb had been venerated since early Christian times, he said. 

“It is clear that Peter’s remains were found in the place of the original burial site on the Vatican hill when the formidable Constantinian basilica was built, the biggest basilica ever established in the city,” Fiocchi Nicolai said.

Excavations of the necropolis under St. Peter’s Basilica began in the 1940s near a monument erected in the 4th century to honor St. Peter. In 1968, after bones were discovered and scientifically confirmed that they belonged to  a 60- to 70-year-old robust male, Pope Paul VI announced that the “relics” of St. Peter had been “identified in a way which we can hold to be convincing.”

Source: Aleteia

Banner
Related Post

New Evidence for Roman’s Emerald Production in Egypt’s the Eastern Desert

16 April 2021

16 April 2021

Archaeological excavations in Egypt’s eastern desert provide new data. Excavations in the Egyptian Eastern Desert delivers proof of emerald mines...

In western Turkey, inscriptions and 2,500-year-old sculptures were found

11 July 2021

11 July 2021

Two 2,500-year-old marble statues and an inscription have been found during excavations at the ancient city of Euromos, in Turkey’s...

A Gold Mourning Ring Found on The Isle of Man

21 April 2021

21 April 2021

The ring found with a metal detector on the Isle of Man in December 2020 will be exhibited in the...

Hebrew University Archaeologists have Unveiled 7,000-year-old Seal İmpressions

10 June 2021

10 June 2021

Israeli archaeologists unveiled a 7,000-year-old clay seal impression used for commerce and protection of property, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem...

8,200-year-old lacquerware found in China

9 July 2021

9 July 2021

Archaeologists in eastern China’s Zhejiang Province have identified two items of lacquerware at the Jingtoushan ruins, the oldest ever found...

World’s Oldest Murder

14 February 2021

14 February 2021

Researchers found a mass grave in a cave in Spain, now known as Sima de los Huesos, or the Pit...

The Ancient City of Yijin Among the Top 10 Archaeological Discoveries in China

3 February 2021

3 February 2021

Located in Hangzhou’s Lin’an District, Yijin Ancient City among the top 10 archaeological discoveries in China in 2020. Yijin Ancient...

Archaeologists explore Eastern Zhou Dynasty mausoleum in China’s Henan

30 January 2022

30 January 2022

An archaeological survey of a royal mausoleum of the Eastern Zhou Dynasty (770 B.C.-256 B.C.) has been launched in central...

Archaeologists reconstructing how the Assyrian army conquered the ancient Judean city of Lachish 2700 years ago

9 November 2021

9 November 2021

Archaeologists discovered how King Sennacherib’s soldiers constructed the huge siege ramp that enabled them to defeat the Lachish city 2,700...

In Bergama, the City of Greek Gods, the People Kept the Cult of Cybele Alive

25 August 2021

25 August 2021

The figurines of Cybele, the goddess of the fertility of Anatolia, and the presence of sanctuaries unearthed in the Ancient...

Rare Ancient Bone Game found in Israel “Astragali”

18 August 2022

18 August 2022

Archaeologists have found a rare assemblage of animal knucklebones known as astragali used in ancient Greek games and divination in...

A spectacular rare ancient Roman bronze coin depicting the moon goddess was discovered off the coast of Israel

25 July 2022

25 July 2022

A rare 1850-year-old exceptionally well-preserved bronze coin depicting the Roman moon goddess Luna has been found off the coast of...

Oldest footprints of pre-humans identified in Crete

11 October 2021

11 October 2021

Six million-year-old fossilized footprints on the island show the human foot had begun to develop. The oldest known footprints of...

Egypt opens King Djoser’s 4,500-year-old tomb after a 15-year restoration

15 September 2021

15 September 2021

Egypt on Tuesday showcased an ancient tomb structure belonging to the cemetery complex of King Djoser, a pharaoh who lived more than 4,500...

Archaeologists unearth 600,000-year-old evidence of Britain’s early inhabitants

22 June 2022

22 June 2022

New finds have indicated that some of Britain’s earliest people lived in the Canterbury suburbs. According to the research, led...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.