Colosseum – the largest ever built elliptical amphitheater of the Roman empire is a major touristic attraction in Rome. And of course, we did not miss it. 🙂
If you had seen the movie Gladiator, then you know for what purpose it was used for in those days. But, what ever it is, it is an excellent masterpiece of Roman Architecture and the engineering brain behind really deserves appreciation!
I was really stunned by the massive structure and couldn’t imagine that it could have been constructed during the the 70s of AD. During those times when there were not much facilities for building and when architecture field was not that grown, it is really incredible that they could construct such a huge amphitheater of 50,000 odd seating capacity.
Fortunately, we took an English speaking guide in order to know the historical importance of this place. As and when the guide was explaining to us, it was like re-living in the past and for a moment, I was really taken aback by the very thought that thousands of people and animals were killed for fun in this same place. I just realized that I was standing in a place were more than 500,000 people and more than million animals were killed. It was a very strange feeling!
The gladiator’s lives would be taken away just like that. Also, the king involved the spectators in this violence. If the gladiator should be killed, then the audience crowd will show their “thumbs up” and shout “Kill him”, “murder him”, etc., And very rarely, very very rarely, they might also feel sympathy towards some of the gladiators. Then they show their “thumbs down” indicating – spare him!
It was quite unbelievable that people were so much blood thirsty those days! And men’s lives were taken just like the lives of the video game characters these days. I couldn’t digest it for a while!
Strange enough, I was imagining that the ghosts (there should be millions!!) of the dead would suddenly pop up from somewhere behind those stone structures – like in Hollywood movies! The place drove me crazy!
This place was then later on used for many purposes like quarrying, housing, workshop and many more. And finally the cunning Christian leads took over this place as well.
Though there are no factual/actual claims that Christians sacrificed their lives in this amphitheater, the Pope Benedict XIV announced that Colosseum is a sacred place where historic Christians were martyred. And also, he installed ‘crosses’ every where and made is a place of religious importance as well. So, these days Christians come to the arena and do prayers for the dead.
I was surprised to see the creativity of these people and how they can create a story out of nowhere. Anyways, prayers are better than those brutal murders!
I thanked god that I did not exist in those times and left the place dumbstruck. It took some time for me to become normal again!