This photo of the Colosseum is part of one of the panoramic images found on the PanoramicEarth.com Tour of Rome. There are over 100 images taken from around
The Colosseum is one of the most visited attractions in
The Coliseum was built by the Flavians, with work starting in AD72 and finishing in AD82. The inauguration of Titus in AD80 saw over 5000 wild animals and 2000 gladiators slain in during a 100 day festival. The Middle Ages saw the Colosseum become an informal quarry and stones were often used for other buildings, including parts of St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Coliseum is huge, an ellipse 188m long and 156 wide. Originally 240 masts were attached to stone corbels on the 4th level. From these a vast canopy could be extended to cover the whole amphitheatre if needed. It was used for the re-enactment of famous Roman battles, with gladiators saluting the emperor with 'Ave Caesar, morituri te salutant!' (Hail Caesar, those who are about to die salute thee!).
Entrance to the lower tier around the arena is through gates off to the right of this image. At points steep steps ascend to the upper tier from where this picture was taken. From this vantage point, at the end nearest the Roman Forum, you can clearly see the tunnels and works that rested under the arena floor from which animals and people entered the arena. Part of the arena floor has been reconstructed at the far end, and gladiators used to enter the arena through a gate just below the crowd of people in the foreground. The Imperial box was located at the mid point of the left hand side of the arena.
The most common spelling is "Colosseum", but search will quickly show that it seems that no two places spell it the same. Other variants include 'Coloseum, Colisseum, Colliseum, Colleseum, Colossium and Colissium'.
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