Circus MaximusThe Circus Maximus was the biggest stadium in Ancient Rome. It was a giant chariot-racing circuit over 500 years old. It could seat 250,000 people, which was about one-fourth of Rome's population. The Roman word for it is Circo Massiomo, and in English, it means Great Circle. it originated in the 6th century B.C. when Tarquinius Priscus, the 5th king of Rome, created a track between the Palentine and Aventine Hills. The First permanent starting gates were built in 329 B.C. and were rebuilt in 174 B.C. Actually, the whole thing had to be rebuilt three time due to fire. The fires were in 31 A.D., 64 A.D., 103 A.D. There are barely any remains left of the Circus today.



The Circus Maximus today.
The Circus Maximus today.
The Circus Maximus had many parts to it. It had the Triumphal Arch of Titus, the alba linea (start line), the seven bronze dolphins (or eggs) to count how many laps had passed, imperial box for the emperor, two metae (turning posts), finishing line with the referee's box above it, the long masonry, the obelisk of the egyptian pharaoh, and the 12 carceres (starting gates). Here is a picture of the Circus Maximus in ancient Rome.

The Circus Maximus in Ancient Rome
The Circus Maximus in Ancient Rome
The Circus was the center of many activities in ancient Rome. Since the entry fee to the Circus was free, many went there as an opportunity to gamble. It was also very entertaining because the races always started with a parade or show. There were about 24 races a day, so the place was very busy. It was a great center of commerce too because vendors sold snacks there. The Circus was used for processions or gladiator combats, but mostly for chariot races. The colors of the four chariot teams were red, white, green, and blue, representing the four seasons. The last race of the Circus was held in 549 A.D.
A chariot racing scene in the Circus Maximus.
A chariot racing scene in the Circus Maximus.


Video of the Circus Maximus!!!
http://youtu.be/vtSywXUfsrU

Works CitedStroud, Jonathon. Sightseer's: Ancient Rome: A Guide to the Glory of Imperial Rome. Kingfisher books Ltd, 2000.James, Simon. Ancient rome. DK CHILDREN; 1st edition, 2000.Unknown author. "Circus Maximus; Circo Massimo." A View On Cities. 2011. 11 May 2011 <http://www.aviewoncities.com/rome/circusmaximus.htm>.