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Vatican 'secret archives' now on-line

 The 'secret archives' of the Vatican are all now accessible through the Internet. After selecting the language on the Holy See's site: www.vatican.va a click on the Focus section of the home page offers a virtual walk through the archives' age-old halls amidst frescoes and documents. One may (virtually) page through documents such as the 14th century Parchment of Chinon, which records the absolution of Pope Clement V of the leading members of the Templar Order. Also accessible are the proceedings of the trial against Galileo. Among other treasures of the archives are key documents concerning the history of nations. The archives include about 85 linear kilometres of shelves. The oldest document dates to the eighth century, while the archives have an almost uninterrupted documentation starting from 1198. The archives are primarily used by the Holy Father and the Roman Curia. Source: CISA