Teutonic Cemetery

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The Teutonic Cemetery is found in the Vatican between St. Peter’s Basilica and the Paul VI Audience Hall. It is the oldest German establishment in Rome. The entire area is surrounded by a high wall and does not immediately draw one’s attention. However, even a rushed visitor will quickly be drawn by the charm of this plot of land so rich in history.

In ancient Roman times Nero’s circus was found here and it was the site where many Christians were martyred. In 799 a Schola Francorum was spoken of for the first time. For this reason, on the wall of the building there is a ceramic depiction of Charlemagne as the founder. A clearer idea of its history came only in the mid-15th century when the Holy Year 1450 brought many pilgrims to Rome.

In recent times, the cemetery was reserved for the burial of German-speaking members of the various religious institutions in Rome, as well as devout Germans. In February 2015, “Willy,” a homeless Belgian man was buried in the cemetery, with the financial assistance of a German family, after approval by Pope Francis and reflecting his maxim that he wants “a poor church, for the poor”.

Teutonic Cemetery

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