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Colosseum in Rome, Italy

World Wonder: The Colosseum in Rome

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At least 50,000 spectators could sit in the Colosseum of ancient Rome. Today, the amphitheater reminds us of early modern sports arenas.
The Ancient Colosseum in Rome, Italy

The Ancient Colosseum in Rome, Italy

Press photo © 2000-2006 NewOpenWorld Foundation

About the Colosseum in Rome:
The Flavian emperors Vespasian and Titus built the Colosseum, or Coliseum, in central Rome between 70 and 82 AD. The Colosseum is sometimes called the Amphitheatrum Flavium (Flavian Amphitheater) after the emperors who constructed it.

The powerful architecture has influenced sports venues around the world, including the 1923 Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles. The mighty stadium in California, modeled after ancient Rome's, was site of the first Super Bowl game in 1967.

Much of Rome's Colosseum has deteriorated, but major restoration efforts are preserving the structure. The ancient amphitheater is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre in Rome, and one of Rome's most popular tourist attractions. In 2007, the Colosseum was also named one of the New 7 Wonders of the World.

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