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10 curiosities of the Colosseum in Rome

The Colosseum in Rome has been considered a World Heritage Site by Unesco since 1980, as is the entire historic center of Rome.

It is one of the 7 wonders of the modern world and of course it is one of the monuments in Europe with the longest queues… Well, everyone who travels to Rome wants to see the Colosseum!

There are many curiosities that surround this emblematic monument and in this post I will tell you the 10 most interesting curiosities about the Colosseum in Rome.

10 curiosidades del Coliseo de Roma


1. The seats reflected social status

The seats in the Roman Coliseum reflected the hierarchy of Roman society. The more power one had, the lower he sat. So the senators were seated on the lower level, closer to all the action, while the women, men, and poorer slaves could only sit on the upper level.

Also, not everyone was welcome at the Colosseum. Actors, undertakers and former gladiators could not attend any show.

2. It was built for three reasons

The Colosseum in Rome was built for three reasons:

  • It was built as a gift to the Roman citizens of the Flavian dynasty. This is how they increased their popularity.

  • The second reason was to show the powerful Roman engineering techniques to the world.

  • And finally, it was built to organize various entertainment events.

3. A bloody fun

The Roman Colosseum is also known for its gladiator fights. One of the saddest and bloodiest curiosities is that some 400,000 people and more than 1 million animals died for doing these "entertainment shows." Undoubtedly, something that today would be an aberration and unthinkable.

10 curiosidades del Coliseo de Roma

4. Animals from all over the world and of all species

The animals that were displayed and killed in the Colosseum were transported from all corners of the Roman Empire. You could see animals of all kinds such as lions, tigers, hyenas, crocodiles, hippos, ostriches, rhinos, bears, zebras...

5. Against the death penalty

The death penalty was abolished in Italy in 1948. Since 2000, the Roman authorities have kept the building illuminated for 48 hours every time a condemned person's death sentence is commuted or postponed somewhere in the world. The amphitheater has become a symbol against capital punishment. Without a doubt, it is one of the most beautiful curiosities.

6. The Colosseum was built in just 10 years

Can you imagine that this architectural marvel only took 10 years to build? We are talking about record time. They began to build it in the year 70 AD. And it is something impressive that with little technology and the help of machinery (like the one we can have today) they made this huge Colosseum in such a short time.

Subsequently, the Emperor Domitian carried out some renovations, building a gallery at the top of the Colosseum, increasing its capacity, as well as a hypogeum and a series of underground tunnels that would be used to house animals and slaves.

7. It could have been a wool factory

Pope Sixtus V wanted to turn this architectural and historical marvel into a wool factory. His plan included creating a work area in the arena and housing for the workers in the upper area. Luckily it never came true. When the pope died in 1590, this idea was forgotten.

10 curiosidades del Coliseo de Roma

8. Gladiators

One of the curiosities of the Colosseum in Rome became known worldwide thanks to the film Gladiator, starring Russell Crowe.

One of the curiosities of the Colosseum in Rome is shown very well in the film Gladiator, starring Russell Crowe. The gladiators who fought in the Colosseum were marginalized people in Roman society, without the rights of citizenship, and were really slave gladiators.

9. Pieces of the Colosseum in the Basilica of San Flavio in the Vatican?

A fact that few know is that after the Colosseum was partially destroyed by an earthquake, some of the fallen pieces were used to build the famous St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican.

10. Boos at the Colosseum in Rome

If the Roman spectators did not like the spectacle they were witnessing in the Colosseum in Rome, they would throw pieces of fruit into the center of the amphitheatre.

10 curiosidades del Coliseo de Roma


I hope you enjoy your trip to Rome a lot and that this article has been useful to you. You can continue reading many more related articles on the blog.

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A hug and see you soon!


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