St. Peter's Basilica (Latin: Basilica Sancti Petri), officially known in Italian as Basilica di San Pietro in Vaticano or Basilica Papale di San Pietro, is a Late Renaissance church located within Vatican City.
In Roman Catholic tradition, the basilica is the burial site of its namesake Saint Peter, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus and, also according to tradition, the first Bishop of Rome and therefore first in the line of the papal succession. Tradition and some historical evidence hold that Saint Peter's tomb is directly below the altar of the basilica. For this reason, many Popes have been interred at St. Peter's since the Early Christian period. There has been a church on this site since the time of Constantine. Construction of the present basilica, replacing the Old St. Peter's Basilica of the 4th century, began on 18 April 1506 and was completed on 18 November 1626.
Saint Peter's Square (Italian: Piazza San Pietro, pronounced [ˌpi̯aʦa san ˈpi̯ɛːtɾo]) is a massive plaza located directly in front of St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City, the papalenclave surrounded by Rome, directly west of the neighborhood or rione of Borgo.
At the center of the square is a four-thousand-year-old Egyptian obelisk, erected at the current site in 1568. Gian Lorenzo Bernini designed the square almost 100 years later, including the massive Tuscan colonnades, four columns deep, which embrace visitors in "the maternal arms of Mother Church." A granite fountain constructed by Bernini in 1675 matches another fountain designed by Carlo Maderno dating to 1613.