- Travel and Places
Roman Empire Quiz 2
In 1979 this is how the colosseum appeared from the outside. It was our first day in Rome and one of the chief objectives was to inspect this monument to Roman cruelty and barbaric practices. You have to be inside it to fully appeciate its size and you have to walk on the steps to get the feel of how long Roman legs obviously were, In modern society each one would make two of ours.
But we pushed ourselves up and into the first floor to gasp at the arena that has been so many times reproduced for hollywood films and reproductions of what has been termed the chief source of amuzement. Rather like going to the cinema on saturday afternoons or to a diso at night. But here real blood was shed as people died, animals were slaughtered and men, women and even childred, pitted themselves against the hell imposed on then by the Caesars, who sat there enjoying their agony and death.
The View from Above
From the first floor, or main level, you can see down into the depths as the floor itself has rotted away or been removed for safety reasons.Here you see the pits, the alley ways and the entrances where prisoners, slaves, gladiators, animals and guards hung out. It is overwhelming to stand and look down on all of that.
According to Wikipedia, from where most of the historical facts have been obtained, this is considered the one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and engineering. A documentary on television some time ago showed how it was built and of the special innovations that were put in place for the comfort of spectators and to enhance their pleasure,
Did you know that it once had a roof of sails over the top to keep the sun and rain off the audience? How that was implemented was worth watching the documentary for as it required extra special innovation and engineering to support it. Probably akin to the construction of Olympic stadiums today,
"Its construction started in 72 AD under the emperor Vespasian and was completed in 80 AD under Titus," Modifications, however, continued for another 15 years and it was called the "Amphitheatrum Flavium". 'Flavius' was the family name of the two emperors.
"Capable of seating 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum was used for gladiatorial contests and public spectacles such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles, and dramas based on Classical mythology." We also learn that "the building ceased to be used for entertainment in the early medieval era."
But that was not the end of it, According to Wikipedia "it was later reused for such purposes as housing, workshops, quarters for a religious order, a fortress, a quarry, and a Christian shrine." Now doesn't that make you wonder? Here was a site of mass murder, horrendous persecution, unbelievable cruelty to humans and animals alike and now a Christian shrine.
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Have you been to the colusseum in Rome?
History of the Colusseum
Watch this video before attempting the next set of questions
How do You Tell Your Children of the Violence?
My 9 years old daughter, Karen, and 10 year old son, Andrew, were fascinated by the structure and the size of the building. It was something that they would always remember so why put in their minds what actually went on along this path that they, in innocence, now trod.
Oh, they saw the uniforms of the Roman soldiers, displayed on stands and they wondered about the pits and the many corridors. They would also be learning about the tragedies that took place here in school a few years later on but right now it was just a day out for them in a fascinating city where ruins abound and history is everywhere. We bought ice creams and drinks and sat and pondered the building in the heat of this late summer's day.
These little tourists were in their element and I was proud of the way they took it all in. Not a complaint did I hear from either of them nor a whimper from tiredness or anything else. They were just in their glory and it was the right time for this excursion in their growing up years.
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Have you learned something about Rome yet?
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© 2011 norma-holt