The floors of both crypts have sunk considerably and are often under water; this settlement accounts for the inequalities of the pavement.
Wide, and in which there are six crypts for the burial of members of Lincoln's family, and a memorial hall, a museum of Lincolniana.
Shared in the devastation of Rome by the Goths under Vitiges in the 6th century and by the Lombards at a later period; and partly through the spoliation of these barbarian invaders, partly through the neglect of those who should have been their guardians, they sank into such a state of decay and pollution that, as the only means of preserving the holy remains they enshrined from further desecration, Pope Paul I., in the latter part of the 8th century, and Pope Paschal, at the beginning of the 9th, entered upon the work of the translation of the relics, which was vigorously carried on by successive pontiffs until the crypts were almost entirely despoiled of their dead.
Inside and out, the whole of the temple is covered with scenes and inscriptions in crowded characters, of ceremonial and religious import; the decoration is even carried into a remarkable series of hidden passages and chambers or crypts made in the solid walls for the reception of its most valuable treasures.
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