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Circus Maximus in Rome
Source book is Henry M. Sayre , THE HUMANTIES : CULTURE, CONTINUITYAND CHANGE. volume1, 2011 custom edition.. .I was only issued a hardcopy of this book…
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“Rome’s Major Urban Structures; Constantinople’s Hagia Sophia” Please respond to the following:
- After reading Chapter, 6, especially pp. 174-5 and 191-207, let us consider and discuss some of ancient Rome’s major structures and what they tell us of life there. The Colosseum was more often called the Flavian Amphitheater after the emperors who constructed it. It is very large, but it actually took its name from a colossal statue of Nero that used to stand next to it. See this Website at , and look for two (2) pieces of information: 1) the important formal difference between a theater and an amphitheater; and 2) the flimsy but ingenious wooden movable structure of Scribonius Curio (the Curionis Theater). But the Colosseum was never the largest entertainment venue in Rome. That label would go to the Circus Maximus, which was primarily for Rome’s most popular sport – chariot racing. It really was the ancient world’s largest horse race track, what the Greeks called a hippodrome. (In the fictional movie Ben Hur, the famous chariot race is at a hippodrome that actually did once exist in Jerusalem). See , , and for information and images about the Circus Maximus. Most estimates say it could seat 150,000, though other estimates go higher. Best of all, after all of that we can relax. Go to and click on the numbers for a stroll through the Baths of Caracalla. Note the three (3) types of baths in any bath complex. After exploring the pages and Websites above, discuss the structure you found most fascinating. Identify two (2) specific aspects of it, and make a comparison to modern urban life.
- In Chapter 8, we encounter the great Hagia Sophia (pp. 266-7), constructed in the 500s AD as the most spectacular church structure for many centuries. See for a fun tour; it can be visited in modern Istanbul, Turkey. The Hagia Sophia once had many mosaics. The surviving mosaics from St. Catherine’s monastery (pp. 267-9) and from the churches of Ravenna (pp. 270-3) give us a sense of the types of subjects and beauty of the mosaics that might have been in the Hagia Sophia. After reading and exploring these places, consider here the role of architecture and art in Christian worship in those days by discussing the following: Describe how they kept such a large dome from collapsing. Describe how light gets in and what Augustine might say of the importance of this. Of the mosaics on these pages, identify which you enjoy most, and explain what it was communicating to the medieval worshipper
Circus Maximus in Rome
The Roman Circus was used to hold chariot and horseracing, public feasts, religious ceremonies and athletics. Theaters, amphitheaters and the roman circus were the main entertainment sites during that time. The Circus Maximus was the greatest and largest Roman Circus. It existed in the 4th century and was repeatedly renovated and built. In 103 AD, Emperor Trajan reconstructed the circus as a stone construction after its wooden………………
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