• Hazel DodgeEmail author
Living reference work entry


The amphitheater is one of several classes of building that were developed to accommodate a range of entertainments and spectacles in the Roman world. It was an exclusively Roman architectural development and was traditionally associated with gladiatorial display, although it came to accommodate animal displays and executions as well. As a building type, it was relatively late in reaching its canonical form and acquiring the associated facilities. Debates about the origins of both the structures and the types of display have monopolized scholarly attention, although recent research has clarified many points (Futrell 1997; Welch 2007). Partly as a result of senatorial opposition as well as cultural conservatism, permanent amphitheaters were not constructed in the city of Rome until the very late first century BCE, despite the fact that they were being provided earlier for other cities in Italy (e.g., at Pompeii). In the provinces, most amphitheaters were constructed in the...


A1 Avoidance Early Imperial Period Greek East Arena Floor Lepcis Magna 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ClassicsTrinity College Dublin 2DublinIreland

Section editors and affiliations

  • Jeffrey A. Becker
    • 1
  • Alison Barclay
    • 2
  1. 1.Dept. of Classical and Near Eastern StudiesBinghamton University - SUNYBinghamtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Modern Languages and ClassicsSaint Mary's UniversityHalifaxCanada