That night, the basilica of St. Peter gleamed with breathtaking brilliance. A few years earlier, Leo IIIs predecessor, pope Hadrian I, had covered the entire floor of the sanctuary with plates of silver; he had covered the walls with gold plates and enclosed it all with a balustrade of gold weighing 1,328 pounds. He had remade the sanctuary gates with silver, and had placed on the iconostasis six images also made of silver, representing Christ, Mary, the archangels Gabriel and Michael, and saints Andrew and John. Finally, in order to make this splendor visible to all, he had ordered the assembly of a candelabrum in the form of a huge cross, on which 1,365 candles burned.Frankly, with no disrespect meant to the Pope, any time you cover a Church with that much gold and silver the proper response is for someone to sack the Church and deflate your ego a bit. That much money on the floor is just asking for it. Make it beautiful and opulent, but its not a palace, its a Church. That much gold and silver, imho, moves beyond providing the proper respect to the Tabernacle, and begins to shift the focus to men and their wealth, detracting from the worship of God. The muslims probably did us a favor in sacking it.
. . .
What happened is that in 846 some Muslim Arabs arrived in a fleet at the mouth of the Tiber, made their way to Rome, sacked the city, and carried away from the basilica of St. Peter all of the gold and silver it contained.
(I must be about two quarts low of Ecumenical antifreeze because I think my spiritual radiator is about to boil over)