In November 2009 I spent two weeks in Rome. The goal was to visit art museums and galleries as much as possible. We rented an apartment in Prati, the neighborhood near the Vatican and Castel San Angelo. This view of Piazza San Pietro (Saint Peter's Square) was part of our everyday walk, a mere three blocks away. This is a quick watercolor sketch I did in 4x6" (10x15cm.) as a souvenir.
There was so much corruption in Rome at the time of Michelangelo, that to set a high moral example, he made no charge for his dessign of the dome, dedicating it to the Madonna. He had always venerated her (his mother had died when he was 5 years old). The dome was constructed between 1546 and 1564, dessigned free of charge by Michelangelo Buonarotti.