The Momo Staircase


The Momo Staircase is located in the Vatican Museums in the Vatican City State.


The staircase was designed by Giuseppe Momo in 1932. The staircase forms a double helix consisting of two ramps which circumnavigate around one central point. One ramps accommodates people ascending while the other accommodates those descending. The staircase covers about 15 meters in diameter and has an open centre which is filled with light from the overhead glass canopy. The wrought iron staircase is decorated with ornate bronze balustrades, as seen in the adjoining photograph. 

The staircase is located at the exit of the Vatican museums and is one of the most photographed objects in the Vatican Museums. It is a sight to behold and one which any art lover should indulge in after a day spent in the museums. 

Did you know?: The helical shape of the Momo Staircase was inspired by Bramante’s staircase which was built in the Vatican Museums in 1512. This staircase established the double helical design, which consisted of two ramps revolving around a central point, long before the discovery of the double helical structure of DNA. Both of these staircases are located in the Pio-Clementine Museum of the Vatican Museums. As a result, the Momo staircase is often incorrectly referred to as the Bramante Staircase.

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