The Colosseum (Wonders of the World)

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9781861974921: The Colosseum (Wonders of the World)
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The Colosseum was Imperial Rome's monument to warfare. Like a cathedral of death it towered over the city and invited its citizens, 50,000 at a time, to watch murderous gladiatorial games. It is now visited by two million visitors a year (Hitler was among them). Award winning classicist, Mary Beard with Keith Hopkins, tell the story of Rome's greatest arena: how it was built; the gladiatorial and other games that were held there; the training of the gladiators; the audiences who revelled in the games, the emperors who staged them and the critics. And the strange after story - the Colosseum has been fort, store, church, and glue factory.

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About the Author:

KEITH HOPKINS was Professor of Ancient History at Cambridge and Vice-Provost of King's College. MARY BEARD is Professor of Classics at Newnham College, Cambridge, and the classics editor of the TLS. Her books include the acclaimed The Roman Triumph and The Parthenon (in the Wonders of the World series of which she is general editor). She is also the award winning author of Pompeii, which was a BBC documentary.

From Booklist:

The authors point out that the Colosseum in Rome was constructed for the enjoyment of murder. They explain the role of that famous monument in Roman history and politics--a place in which the emperor came face-to-face with his people. Inaugurated in A.D. 80, the Colosseum was the scene of animals sent to fight each other or pitted against trained marksmen and hunters, some on horseback, others on foot, picking the animals off with spears, swords, or arrows. There were public executions, and gladiators, described by the authors as "marginal outsiders in Roman society; captives of war, the poor and destitute who saw in possible success in the arena their only hope," fought one another (a wounded or defeated gladiator was at the mercy of the audience). Hopkins and Beard note that the role of the audience was important; the people, seated in hierarchical ranks according to status, were in effect a microcosm of the Roman citizen body. A fascinating account for the Rome-bound traveler as well as the fan of European history. George Cohen
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9780674060319: The Colosseum (Wonders of the World)

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Keith Hopkins - Mary Beard
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