After such a long time (read : a few month), I must be have forgotten completely about this post. Me and my little family was in Rome few months back, and guess what, I have not blog about Colosseum!
Even today, in a world of skyscrapers, the Colosseum is hugely impressive. It stands as a glorious but troubling monument to Roman imperial power and cruelty. Inside it, behind those serried ranks of arches and columns, Romans for centuries cold-bloodedly killed literally thousands of people whom they saw as criminals, as well as professional fighters and animals.
Ok, lets start by camwhore a little bit.
Learning our mistake from visiting Vatican City, we came to Colosseum roughly at about 5 p.m in the afternoon. It was great! No queue and no crowds, hence we can take a picture easily and as much as we want.
The Colosseum or Roman Coliseum, originally the Flavian Amphitheatre (Latin: Amphitheatrum Flavium, Italian Anfiteatro Flavio or Colosseo), is an elliptical amphitheatre in the center of the city of Rome, Italy, the largest ever built in the Roman Empire. It is one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and Roman engineering.
Capable of seating 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum was used for gladiatorial contests and public spectacles. As well as the gladiatorial games, other public spectacles were held there, such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles, and dramas based on Classical mythology. The building ceased to be used for entertainment in the early medieval era.
It was later reused for such purposes as housing, workshops, quarters for a religious order, a fortress, a quarry, and a Christian shrine. (I was so amazed by this fact!)
It has been estimated that about 500,000 people and over a million wild animals died in the Colosseum games. Indeed, it was the amphitheatre's reputation as a sacred spot where Christian martyrs had met their fate that saved the Colosseum from further depredations by Roman popes and aristocrats - anxious to use its once glistening stone for their palaces and churches. The cathedrals of St Peter and St John Lateran, the Palazzo Venezia and the Tiber's river defences, for example, all exploited the Colosseum as a convenient quarry.
You can see the stage whereby the bloody battle used to took place. The arena itself was probably covered by a good 15cm of sand (harena), sometimes dyed red to disguise blood. And, as is evident in Ridley Scott's film Gladiator (2000), the arena was dotted with trap-doors designed to let animals leap dramatically into the fray. The arena was also sometimes decorated with elaborate stage scenery, so that the ritual murder could be varied with theatrical tales
Although in the 21st century it stays partially ruined due to damage caused by devastating earthquakes and stone-robbers, the Colosseum is an iconic symbol of Imperial Rome and its breakthrough achievements in earthquake engineering.
It is one of Rome's most popular tourist attractions and still has close connections with the Roman Catholic Church, as each Good Friday the Pope leads a torchlit "Way of the Cross" procession around the various levels of the amphitheatre.
More picture from the outside. Note that in summer, colosseum closed at 7.30 p.m. Hence it is quite make sense to get the last admission at 5 or 5.30 p.m and spend 2 hour crowd free wandering around this magnificent place.
Some picture on the late evening.