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A Victorian Scrapbook

A Scrapbook of Newspaper Articles Compiled by George Burgess (1829-1905)

Victorian Religion

The Size and Capacity of European Churches

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Transcript from original newspaper article: -

THE SIZE OF EUROPEAN CHURCHES.

European Churches….compiled to show the impossibility of St. Peter’s at Rome being ever crowed, gives some curious statistics as to the comparative capacity of the most celebrated churches in Europe. We add a column, exhibiting the number of square yards. Those who attended at St. Peter’s during the august ceremonies of Christmas-day might, perhaps, have imagined that temple, in all parts open to the public during the function, as much crowded as possible. To show the impossibility of St. Peter’s being ever crowed, we annex the following statistics of its capabilities, as compared with other great churches, allowing four persons to every quadrate meter (square yard): -

  Persons.
Sq. yds.
St. Peter’s.
54,000
13,500
Milan Cathedral.
37,000
9,250
St. Paul’s, at Rome.
32,000
8,000
St. Petronio, at Bologna.
25,600
6,400
Florence Cathedral.
24,400
6,100
Antwerp Cathedral
24,300
6,075
St. Sophia’s, at Constantinople.
23,000
5,750
St. John, Lateran.
22,900
5,725
Notre Dame, at Paris.
21,000
5,250
Pisa Cathedral.
13,000
3,250
St. Stephen’s, at Vienna.
12,400
3,100
St. Dominick’s, at Bologna.
12,000
3,000
St. Peter’s at Bologna.
11,400
2,850
Cathedral of Siena.
11,000
2,750
St. Mark’s, Venice.
7,000
1,750

The Piazza of St. Peter’s in its limits allowing twelve (persons) to the quadrate meter (square yard), holds 624,000; allowing four to the same, drawn up in military array, 208,000. In its narrower limits, not comprising the porticoes of the Piazza Rusticucci, 474,000 crowded, and 138,000 in military array.