Image via Wikipedia By Sarah Dudleymore
The Colosseum was commissioned by the Emperor Vespasian between 70 and 72 AD and was completed in 80 AD by his son Domitian. It was built on a marshy site of a lake near the site of Nero's enormous palace. There was a colossus (a very tall statue) of Nero nearby, from which legend says the Colosseum's name was originated from, later destroyed in the great fire of Rome.
The Colosseum was cleverly designed. It has been said that most today's stadiums, and structures alike have been inspired by the concepts introduced in the Colosseum's building structure, even in modern times. It could be evacuated inearly in five minutes. The most inventive part of the Colosseum was its cooling system. It was roofed using a canvas covered net-like structure made of ropes, with a hole in the center to provide a breeze for the audience.
Another nifty feature the Colosseum had was a vomitoria - a passageway that opens into a row of seats from below or behind. The vomitoria of the Colosseum in Rome were designed so that the massive venue could fill in 15 minutes. (There were 80 entrances at ground level, 76 for ordinary spectators and 4 for the imperial family.) A true magnificent architectural development for its time. It's a also a building of great beauty and design.
During the Middle Ages, the Colosseum was converted into a fortress and the marble was burned used to make quicklime. During the Renaissance period, but mostly in the Baroque age, the ruling Roman families (from which many Popes of the Catholic Church came from) used it as a source of marble for the construction of St. Peters Basilica you see today.
The Colosseum Area in Rome is today a very popular touristic place where you can spend a full day hanging around in the many cafes, restaurants, typical pizzerias and bars. In the very city center, steps away from the forum area, safe and lively. You can enjoy it at the most on every Sunday morning when the whole are is closed to traffic and only bicicles and pedestrians are allowed.
Sarah Dudleymore is a professional travel consultant. She is working for "The Key to Italy" a travel agency specialized in Holiday Apartments for Rent in Rome. If you are looking for an accommodation for your vacation in Rome, make sure to check our elegant Rome Apartments in Colosseum.
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