Thousands of Catholic pilgrims amass in the Piazza San Pietro (St. Peter's Square) in the hope of seeing a glimpse of the Pope. Known in Latin as the Forum Sancti Petri, it is located directly in front of St. Peter's Basilica in the independent papal enclave of the Vatican City inside Rome.
At the centre of the square is a 25.5m tall (84ft) red granite, Egyptian obelisk, that was originally constructed and erected in Heliopolis in Egypt, by an unknown pharaoh. The Emperor Augustus (c. 63 BC – 14 AD) had the obelisk moved to the Julian Forum of Alexandria in Egypt, where it stood until 37 AD, when the subsequent roman Emperor Caligula ordered the forum demolished and the obelisk transferred to Rome. It was placed at the centre of the Circus of Nero, where it would ironically preside over Nero's countless Christian executions, and was moved to the current site in 1586 under the direction of direction of Pope Sixtus V. It is the only obelisk in Rome that has not toppled since ancient Roman times. Shot taken from the roof of St. Peter's Basilica.