Castel Sant Angelo is a castle built for the Emperor Hadrian. The other name of the castle is Mausoleum of Hadrian, meaning the Mausoleum of Hadrian. Mausoleum literally means large and ostentatious mausoleum.
At the time it was built, in 135, it was one of the largest buildings in Rome. The construction of the building was completed in 4 years. However, Hadrian died a year before the completion of the building, he did not see it completed.
In the following periods, the ashes of other emperors were also kept here. It is said that the ashes of the Roman Emperor Caracalla, who died in 217, were added to the ashes placed in today’s treasure room.
With the adoption of Christianity, it was used as the papal center for a long time. According to legend, Pope Gregorius I prayed to God to prevent the plague that was spreading at the time. Upon this, the archangel Michael came down from heaven and sheathed his sword. This is a sign that his prayers were answered. The 18th century bronze statue of an angel on the castle was made to revive this legend. The original marble statue can be found inside the castle.
Sant Angelo Castle, which was used as a prison after the Vatican was founded and the Pope was transferred to the Vatican, is the place where Cem Sultan, the child of Mehmed the Conqueror by Çiçek Hatun and the brother of Bayezid II, was imprisoned.
Sant Angelo Castle, which has over 50 rooms, serves as a fortress where trials and executions take place. People died of hunger, thirst or torture in the castle’s rooms, and many people were executed and their heads were hung on the bridge as an example.
Sant’Angelo Castle, which has been serving as the National Museum of Sant’Angelo Castle since 1925 when it lost its military status, has a wonderful view. You can have a panoramic view of Rome and the Vatican.
In some of the rooms of the castle, different tools of war used in battles to protect the castle, mainly guns and cannons, are also on display.
Some rooms, such as those on the upper floors of the castle, are decorated with beautiful frescoes.
The 3-arched Ponte Sant’Angelo (Sant’ Angelo Bridge), which you will encounter on the Tiber River on the way to the castle, was built by Hadrian in 134. You will see many angel statues on the bridge. Many angel statues with columns, whips and spears add a different splendor to the castle and the bridge. Especially from the top of the castle, you can take great bird’s eye view photos including the bridge.