400 Year Old Archive: Secrets of the Vatican

Clip taken from a section of a document in the Trial of Galileo (1633). The document is in the Vatican's Secret Archive- Clip taken from Vatican’s Secret Archives turn 400 years old- http://www.romereports.com/

Today is the birthday of the Vatican’s Secret Archive, which dates back to January 31, 1612. The archive is full of amazing documents. Despite the colorful comments that can be found tied to the fact that the archive remains “secret,” this archive houses some of the most fascinating documents in the world. Documents in the archive have been made available with the pre-approval of authorities (of course) to academics and historians over the years. My guess would be that preference is given to scholars whom convey a positive image of the church. There are more than 50 miles of shelves in this archive. The records contained in the archives span 12 centuries of history. As an archivist who loves history, science, and the stars, my favorite documents housed in the archive would likely be those associated with the Trial of Galileo. He was a bit of a thorn in the side of the Roman Inquisition, and details of his 1633 trial are among the “secrets” this archive keeps. Galileo Galilei battled with the Catholic Church until his death in 1642. The church did not like him mainly because he was against the Aristotelian theory of the universe, and he favored astronomy and the Copernican theory. Artists have rendered interpretations (in various media) of his inquisition for centuries. It is a very interesting case! When you get a chance, check out this video footage about the anniversary of the archive at http://youtu.be/8naSnSysKmg.


Clip taken from a document is in the Vatican's Secret Archive- Clip taken from Vatican’s Secret Archives turn 400 years old- http://www.romereports.com/


*****Coat of Arms of the Holy See***** Is this a cryptogram? Things that come to mind... There are two keys- number 11? Why is one key gold and the other silver? The keys would open seperate doors, yet they are bound together by the handle and in the center (with a cross). I see the number 3 repeated 4 times in the crown. That equals 12. There were 12 Apostles. There were also several 12th-century Roman Catholic Church Councils. 12 is a symbol of cosmic order. "Europe's Apostasy and Idolatry The Flag: Do we see an 'ecclesiastical Babylon' in Europe? The European Union (EU) flag comprises 12 golden stars on a blue background. Officially it is claimed that the circle of 12 stars represents 'solidarity and harmony between the peoples of Europe', the number 12 denoting 'perfection, completeness and unity' (in the Bible, 12 denotes 'governmental perfection')."


Vatican’s Secret Archives turn 400 years old

Originally published online on 1.31.2012 by http://www.romereports.com/

Within the walls of Vatican City is stored one of the most important treasures in the world, the Vatican’s Secret Archives.

Only a limited number of people can access documents kept here by the Catholic Church. It’s free to gain access, but only academics and historians are allowed and they must request authorization from the Vatican.

In 1810, Napoleon Bonaparte took over 3,000 documents to Paris. After his fall from power, the files over time made their way back to the Vatican. Although during these transfers, many valuable documents were lost, some of which were from the fifth century.

Today, 400 years after its creation, the archive has over 50 miles of shelving, filled with books, papal bulls, decrees and encyclicals that cover twelve centuries of history. Among its corridors, one can find documents like the parchment of acquittal of Clement V to the Templars, from August of the year 1308, and details from the trial of Galileo, as well as the request for a marriage annulment by England’s King Henry VIII.

To celebrate it’s 400th anniversary, the exhibition “Lux in Arcana” has been created. From March to September, visitors to Rome can find 100 documents from the Vatican’s Secret Archives on display in the Capitoline Museums.

Vatican’s Secret Archives turn 400 years old


Explore posts in the same categories: Archives, Art, Artists, Astrology, Edification, Exhibits, Hidden History, Historic Records, History, News, Philosophy, Physics, Science, Scientists, Space, Spiritual, Worthy Reads

12 Comments on “400 Year Old Archive: Secrets of the Vatican”

  1. cantueso Says:

    I know nothing about history, but I’ll send a friend over to see this. Of course their secrecy is the main attraction of those archives. If they were not secret, nobody would care and few would try to find things there.

    It must be an awful mess, because it would take an army of scholars to record what got displaced in the last 500 years and what got stolen and whether there aren’t any mice anywhere, have never been any.

    • flujan Says:

      Cantueso- thank you for visiting my site. The secret archive may be a hook, however, there are excellent records housed by this repository. If the archives were not secret some people would still care. Usually pop culture is blind to the benefits of historical enlightenment. There are a few special people out there who care with or without the secret! I do agree that it would take “an army of scholars” to get things together. Same goes for any archive… —F

  2. My favourite conspiricy about this place is that they secretly have the ‘Q source’ documents. I don’t believe that, but I bet they have some fantastic stuff in there!

    • flujan Says:

      Neural Outlet… I soooo love your web site! Thank you for visiting mine, and also for your comment. Of course- now I want to know much more about the ‘Q source’ documents…

  3. kofegeek Says:

    yeah, I read a lot about Galileo trial. My newtonian lecturer in college bring it into class discussion. That trial bring negative impact to Vatican and it’s coupled with the death punishment to one of Galileo follower 😦

    • flujan Says:

      A Newtonian lecturer??? So very cool!!! I would have loved that— I would have died a thousands deaths for such a master mind 😉 Thanks for the visit! –F

  4. bunkerville Says:

    They had a piece on 60 minutes and much of it is under unbelievable security. One has to wonder what the concern in with all of their hidden treasures. Nice find.

    • flujan Says:

      When was that special on 60 Minutes? I so missed that!! I’m gonna have to check into that. Funny- but I am a believer on that level of security! It all comes down to the sacred versus the secular right?

  5. […] In 2012, I wrote about the religious archive and the trial documents of Galileo in a post titled 400 Year Old Archive: Secrets of the Vatican. At that time, romereports.com stated that the Vatican secret archive contains 50 miles of shelving. […]

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