The Archbasilica Cathedral of the Most Holy Savior and of Saints John the Baptist and John the Evangelist in the Lateran is also known as the Papal Archbasilica of Saint John in Lateran, Saint John Lateran, or the Lateran Basilica. It is the oldest and highest ranking of the four major papal basilicas as well as one of the Seven Pilgrim Churches of Rome, holding the unique title of "archbasilica". Founded in 324 by Constantine the Great, it is the oldest public church in the city of Rome, and the oldest basilica of the Western world.
The church has been destroyed by fire twice, has been rebuilt several times and is therefore very diverse in style: from the magnificent 4th century baptistery to the majestic Baroque interior. The eastern facade, through which one enters the church, is the work of Alessandro Galilei (1732-35), while the northern facade was designed by Fontana when he rebuilt the Lateran Palace. The facade is topped by 15 huge statues of Christ and the apostles, visible from miles away.
The Cloister is a masterpiece of Cosmatesque art - the place where are preserved architectural elements, sculptures and ornaments of the ancient basilica. It was created by Pietro Vassalletto, a member of the famous family of Roman marble workers, also the authors of the one in the Basilica of St. Paul outside the walls.