Construction on the Colosseum Begins

Plans for the Colosseum are ready to go.

By Patrick Anderson

ROME, ITALY 70 B.C-Yesterday Vespasian ordered the building of the largest elliptical amphitheater in Rome.  The building will be named the Colosseum and it will hold events such as gladiatorial fights and public spectacles.  Work on the Colosseum will begin next week.

"We will use oxen and carts to haul away earth from the site."  Workers estimate they will need to remove about thirty thousand tons of earth from the site.

The next step in the process includes pouring the foundation.  This will be a circular forty foot deep concrete trench.  Worked into the foundation will be sewage pipes, water pipes, and a series of underground tunnels.

According to workers, almost 3.5 million cubic feet of travertine stone will be needed to build this amphitheater.  "Our crew will use metal clamps to hold the stones together.  Concrete will be used for other parts of the building."

Many events will be held in the Colosseum.  These include gladiatorial contests, public spectacles, mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, and reenactments of famous battles.

The Hypogeum, which translates to underground, is a series of tunnels and rooms under the arena where gladiators and caged animals will be held before entering the arena.  There will also be access tunnels for large animals and an underground tunnel connecting to the Ludus Magnus, a smaller training school for gladiators.

A six acre base and eighty entrances at ground level allow for the Colosseum to be filled and emptied extremely fast.  With its massive size, it will be able to account for over fifty thousand people.

The Colosseum won't be completed for eight years, but once it's done, it will be the largest structure and amphitheater in ancient Rome.

   Additional info here


Nero- Emperor, Theater Actor (37-68 A.D.)

Nero committed suicide when the empire revolted in sixty eight A.D.

Nero led a good life as an emperor and a theater actor.

Caligula- Emperor (12-41 A.D.)

Cassius Chaerea murdered him at the Palatine games.

Caesar Augustus- Emperor (63-14 B.C.)

He died of natural causes on August 19, in Nola.

Constantine- Religious figure, Emperor, General (C. 280-337 A.D.)

He died of natural causes on May 22, in Ancyrona.

Marcus Aurelius- Scholar, emperor, Military leader (121-180 A.D.)

He died of natural causes on March 17.

Julius Caesar- General, Dictator (C. 100-44 B.C.)

He was assassinated on March 15.

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