'St. Peter's - Guide to the Basilica and Square'
The Monument to St. Pius X (1904-1914) was planned by the architect Florestano
Di Fausto and carved by the sculptor Pietro Astorri in 1923. The Pontiff,
carved from the whitest marble, is shown standing, his arms outstretched
to the faithful. Around the door and on its panels are the most beautiful
bas-reliefs in bronze illuminated with gold, recalling episodes from the
'St. Peter's Basilica - A Virtual Tour' by Our
Above the facing door is the Monument to Pius X, squeezed into a rather
small niche. The Pope is shown, entirely in white marble, with his arms
outstretched. The conception and execution of the later metal bas-reliefs
are elegant, but they are not in keeping with the statue. They illustrate
the major works of this canonized Pope, such as the acceptance of Church
doctrine by the learned men, against excessive modernity; the consecration
of 15 French bishops, the reorganization of the Curia, the reconstitution
of Canon Law and Gregorian Chant, to support the struggle against secularism;
the founding of the Bible Institute and the reorganization of the Vatican
The architect of
this cenotaph, inaugurated in 1923, was Florestano Di Fausto; the sculptures
are the work of Pier Enrico Astorri.
'Saint Peter's' by James Lees-Milne
As a spiritual leader, Pius X was notable for his encouragement of frequent
communion, a practice that has transformed the lives of the faithful throughout
the world. His agglutinate effigy stands in a niche of the left aisle.
The pope, with outstretched arms and head bowed under the weight of an
outsize tiara, is wrapped as it were in a blanket of white flour. He is
shown in the act of supplicating the Almighty for the deliverance of mankind
from the First World War, the declaration of which broke his compassionate
heart. On either side of the cupboard door below him are bronze reliefs
representing the grant of Holy Communion to children and the homage of
intellectuals to the Faith.