Built in the middle of the broad valley between the Palatine, the Esquiline and the Caelian hills, the largest of the monuments of ancient Rome became quickly and inevitably the “Colossus” and was therefore known as the Colosseum.
The building was undertaken by the emperor Vespasian, of the Flavian family, between A.D. 70 and 75. and was inaugurated by his son Titus in A.D. 80 with a series of shows that lasted for 100 days. It stood on the site where Nero had excavated a lake in the garden of his Golden House. The undertaking aroused tremendous enthusiasm among the citizens, who regarded the construction of its “45- 50.000” seats as the restitution of public ground which had been usurped for private purposes by the tyrant Nero.
There were numerous entrances, broad corridors, stairways, carefully planned passages of access and six tiers of seats so that spectators could go to the shows in comfort. The shows consisted essentially of gladiatorial combats and wild beast nunts. An elaborate complex of passages and rooms underneath the arena provided storerooms for stage properties and cages for the animals which could be brought up to the arena, and produced at the appropriate moment by an ingenious device of trapdoors and pulleys.
An enormous awning drawn by ropes that were tied to beams fixed in the upper external cornice of the amphitheatre and were manoeuvred by a special service corps of sailors, provided shade for the spectators; and scents were sprayed into the auditorium to mask the smell of blood and the stench of rubbish.
Violent earthquakes, the worst of them in the 13th and 14th centuries, shook down a considerable part of the outer arcade and for many years the great heap of fallen material provided a quarry for the builders of the palaces and churches of the Renaissance.
- Priority entrance into the Colosseum.
- Access to the Arena.
- Access to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.
- Downloadable map of Roman Colosseum.
- Tiqets assistance.
- Guided tours.
- Access to the Colosseum’s 4th and 5th floors.
- Access to the Underground.
- Audio Guide.
Cancellations and changes are not possible for this ticket.