Colosseum Architecture

The Colosseum Architectuire

Colosseum is an elliptical shape building with a short axis of 156m, and a long one of 188m.

It stood 50 meters high, 190 meters long and 156 meters wide. The structure of the Colosseum was built of several different
materials: travertine blocks were used for load-bearing pillars and external walls, stairs and radial walls were build from  blocks and bricks of tufa.

Arches and vaults supported the structure solidly. According to some calculations, the Colosseum could accommodate between 50,000 and 80,000 spectators. It had 80 entries and exits, 76 of which were used by ordinary citizens, while the remaining four were intended for the emparor, political and religious authorities and for the protagonists of the spectacles

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Colosseum Inside

As with stadiums today, everyone who entered the Colosseum had a ticket corresponding to the number above one of the entry gates.The ticket also indicated obligatory pathways led to the tiers of seats. The public seating (cavea) was divided based on a social class. The cavea was divided in 5 sectors which were seperated by corridors. The seats closest to arena were reserved for senators. Knights and other social categories occupied the upper stands, while the highest sector, also known as summa cavea, was intended for the plebs.  The complex was designed not only to control the crowds, but to keep them comfortable. It had 110 drinking fountains and two restrooms large enough to accommodate a packed house.  The Coliseum even had a retractable roof. On hot days an awning called a velarium was unfurled above the upper deck to shade spectators from the Sun. It was operated by sailors from the Roman Navy who were stationed around the top of the Colosseum's arcade. The Arena floor was wood covered with sand. Bellow Arena was hypogeum, a extensive grid of tunnels and  corridors as well as cellars  which are still visible today in the middle of the construction. Cellars were used as chambers for the gladiators, slaves, weapons, equipment needed for the games and the cages for the animals. Construction contained lifts operated by pulleys and ropes which led directly to the arena through the trap doors. Read more about Colosseum history.

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Enjoy a fully guided tours trough Rome Colosseum history

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Skip-the-Line Colosseum and Arena Floor Guided Tour (1.5h)

Skip the Colosseum entrance line and take a 1.5-hour tour of this iconic Roman landmark. Access the usually off-limits arena floor, and see where the gladiators once stood.

From € 49

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Colosseum and Ancient Rome Walking Tour (3h)

Explore Ancient Rome on a walking tour of the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill, and skip the lines to enter the popular attractions with an expert guide. Learn about the Roman Empire, see the tomb of Julius Caesar, and stop at the Via Sacra.

Supporting Buildings

There was many other buildings around Colosseum which were linked to games. On the east side there was a famous training school for gladiators, called Ludus Magnus. The school was connected with Amphitheater with underground corridor to allow gladiators easy access.  Several other schools were also placed in the same area: Ludus Matutinus - training school for fighters and animals,  Gallic  school and Dacian School. Some of the other supporting buildings nearby were the Spoliarium, a place where bodies of dead gladiators were disposed. Armamentarium used for weapons storing, the Summum Choragium, where machinery was stored an the Sanitarium, which was used to treat wounded gladiators.

Did you know that the infamous Emperor never set foot inside the arena

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From € 89


Colosseum Underground, Arena and Forum Tour (3h)

Enjoy exclusive access to areas of the Colosseum not available on a regular ticket such as the Underground, Arena and 4th and 5th tier (optional). Learn more about everyday life in Ancient Rome at the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

From € 167

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Colosseum, Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel & Basilica Tour (7h)

Treat yourself with this skip-the-line visit to Rome's most important artworks, including the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel and the monuments of ancient Rome on this guided full-day tour with a typical lunch in a central restaurant.

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