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Vatican City (Overlay)

Vatican City — formally State of the Vatican City, or Vatican City State (Latin: Status Civitatis Vaticanæ and Italian: Stato della Città del Vaticano) — is a sovereign landlocked enclave surrounded by Rome, Italy. The modern-day home of the popes, it is the smallest independent state in the world in terms of area(0,45 sqm) and population(805). It is administered by the Holy See, the ecclesiastical seat of the Roman Catholic Church and its Eastern Rite.



The Head of State is the Pope; the Heads of Government are the Secretary of State and Governor of Vatican City (sometimes referred to as the President of Vatican City). Currently, they are Pope Benedict XVI, a German; Angelo Cardinal Sodano, an Italian; and Edmund Cardinal Szoka, an American of Polish descent. The governance of the Holy See is separate, consisting of the Roman Curia in turn consisting of members of the College of Cardinals. The Heads of Government are concurrently agents of the Roman Curia.



The city takes its name from Mons Vaticanus, also known as Vatican Hill. Mons Vaticanus and the adjacent Vatican Fields upon which St. Peter's Basilica and its Sistine Chapel, Apostolic Palace and museums were built, predates Christendom.



Die Vatikanstadt (Vatikan) ist der kleinste eigenständige Staat der Welt. Er liegt innerhalb des Stadtgebiets von Rom (Italien) und hat eine Fläche von 0,45 km² und 805 Einwohner (davon 552 Staatsbürger). Zur Vatikanstadt gehören der Petersdom, der Petersplatz, sowie die Paläste und Gärten innerhalb der vatikanischen Mauern.



Includes 2 image-overlays. Discription in English and German.