Vatican population: 572

It’s the tiniest country in the world, and most of its citizens are overwhelmingly male.

Details, from CNS:

Millions of citizens of countries from all over the world enter Vatican territory every year to visit the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica or catch a glimpse of the pope on a Sunday in St. Peter’s Square.

But only a select 572 souls can claim citizenship of the Vatican itself, statistics released March 1 showed.

Those are the ones carrying what is probably the most exclusive ID card in the world, issued by the Stato della Citta del Vaticano, or Vatican City State. And of that rarefied group, only 32 are women.

The agency that regulates life within the smallest country on the planet issued the statistics listing who actually lives within the Vatican walls. The facts and figures accompanied copies of Pope Benedict XVI’s new regulations for citizenship, residency and access to areas not open to the general public.

Bishop Giorgio Corbellini, deputy secretary general of the Vatican City governor’s office, explained in a statement that the papal laws updated the old rules written in 1929 under the treaty with Italy known as the Lateran Pacts. Under the old regulations, residents were obliged to accept citizenship; now some people, such as spouses of employees, can opt out of Vatican citizenship.

Who are the citizens of the Vatican? The pope, naturally, and 73 cardinals who live within the walls or in Rome; 306 members of the papal diplomatic corps; 49 priests and religious brothers; one nun; 86 Swiss Guards; and 25 laymen and 31 laywomen, most of whom are Vatican employees, along with their spouses and children, the list showed.

Read the rest.

  • Jim McCullough

    Hmm. “[M]ost of its citizens are overwhelmingly male”? The rest are female or underwhelmingly male…or is there a more subtle gradient involved?

  • Pete

    The children of the Swiss Guards while under age are probably counted as generic children and not males or females. Maybe that’s the subtlety.


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