Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Monday 17 May |
Saint of the Day: St. Rasso of Grafrath
home iconArt & Culture
line break icon

The hidden history of Rome’s Colosseum, revealed

Manuel Cohen | AFP

Zelda Caldwell - published on 04/13/17

What went on there after the fall of the Roman Empire?

What happened in Rome’s Colosseum, after the Empire fell?

That’s the subject of a new exhibition in Rome that came about after archaeologists, while restoring the great amphitheater, discovered evidence that a large wooden walkway was built across it.

The discovery shed light on the hidden history of the Colosseum during the Middle Ages. That walkway turned out to be part of a fortress built by the Frangipane family in the 12th century, according to the report.

“Millions of tourists come here each year to learn about the Roman period but they have little idea of how the Colosseum was used during the medieval era,” Riccardo Santangeli Valenzani, one of the curators of the new exhibition, told The Telegraph.

Later, when days of gladitorial battles (and maybe the Frangipanes themselves) were long forgotten, the Colosseum seemed to serve a role as a kind of giant marketplace, and was filled with workshops, stables, slaughterhouses and storehouses. There was also evidence of wool being spun, and jewelry being sold, according to the Telegraph.

The exhibition, entitled “The Colosseum – An Icon,” will be open in Rome until January 2018.

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
ascension AND ASSUMPTION
Philip Kosloski
Ascension vs. assumption: What is the difference?
2
SAINT MATTHIAS
Philip Kosloski
Why Matthias was chosen to replace Judas as an apostle
3
BENOIT JOSEPH LABRE
Larry Peterson
Benedict XVI called him “one of the most unusual saintsR...
4
KNEELING
Philip Kosloski
How to pray the Divine Praises
5
Philip Kosloski
What was the message of Our Lady of Fatima?
6
I.Media for Aleteia
These 30 shrines will lead the Rosary Relay for end of the pandem...
7
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.