Anniversary Of The Foundation Of Vatican City

Observed as a national holiday in Vatican City State, the Anniversary of the Foundation of Vatican City is celebrated every year on February 11th. This holiday commemorates the Lateran Treaty of February 11, 1929, which established the Vatican as a distinct territory with sovereign authority, exclusive dominion, and jurisdiction separate from Italy. This made the city one that was governed by the Holy See and an independent state.

This holiday is a public holiday in the Vatican, and there are appropriate observances for this holiday in the city. Also, many people have the day off on this holiday—a holiday that’s called Anniversario della istituzione dello Stato della Città del Vaticano by the local population.

The History of the Anniversary of the Foundation of Vatican City

In 1870, under the Italian Unification, the holdings of the Pope were left uncertain when Rome was annexed after nominal resistance by papal forces. This situation would become known as the Roman Question and continued for the next five decades. While Italy made no attempt to interfere with the Holy See within the walls of the Vatican, the country did confiscate church property in other places.

In 1929, the situation was resolved when the Lateran Treaty was signed between the Holy See and the Kingdom of Italy. This treaty established Vatican City as an independent state and reaffirmed the status of Catholicism in Italy.

Observing the Anniversary of the Foundation of Vatican City

Although most public holidays in Vatican City revolve around religious feasts such as the Nativity of Mary or Christmas, there are two holidays that are exceptions to this rule.

The first holiday is the anniversary of the election of the Pope, and the second one is the Anniversary of the Foundation of Vatican City. However, the latter is a public holiday and is observed as a general day off for those living in the Vatican.

Where is it celebrated?
Holy See (Vatican City) (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
February 11 Sunday
Next year (2025)
February 11 Tuesday
Last year (2023)
February 11 Saturday