Photo By Peter Watts
Colosseum of Rome

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This panoramic photograph gives very little indication of the number of people wandering around the Colosseum at the time it was taken. The Colosseum is huge, even when in such a ruined state it is very impressive. It is not surprising that so many tourists visit it. This panorama was taken quite early in the morning when the temperatures in Rome had not yet climbed to over 30C.


Colosseum of Rome - Rome visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Colosseum of Rome' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Roma.

The Colosseum is one of the most visited attractions in Rome. Even though over half of the material that made up the Colosseum has been plundered for other building works, the ruins are still very impressive. It is next to the Arch of Constantine and close to the Roman Forum.

Because of the popularity, the Colosseum is often full of people unless you get there early. If you see a queue outside the building then there are another 100m or within the outer ring of the Colosseum hidden from view before you get to the ticket office! Tickets to the Colosseum also allow entry to the Palatine Hill, accessed through the Roman Forum.

The Coliseum in Rome was built by the Flavians. Work started in AD72 and finished in AD82. The inauguration of Titus in AD80 was a 100 day festival during which over 5000 wild animals and 2000 gladiators died. During the Middle Ages the Colosseum became an informal quarry and stones were often used for other buildings in Rome, including parts of St. Peter's Basilica.

The Coliseum is a huge 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 to shield spectators. The Colosseum 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!). Such a death was not considered dishonourable in Roman times.

Steep steps ascend at points within the Colosseum ascend to the upper tier from where this picture was taken. This panoramic photograph was taken at the end nearest the Roman Forum, and the tunnels and works that rested under the arena floor from which animals and people entered the arena are clearly visible. Part of the arena floor has been reconstructed at the far end. 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'.


Piazza del Colosseo


Bus: Piazza del Colosseo
Metro: Colosseo (B)

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