The external circumference was 309 meters, the circumference of the Arena 192 meters and it has been calculated that it could contain 15'000 seated spectators and almost double that figure with the addiction of structures for standing spectators (for various hypothesis about capacity R. J. WILSON, la topografia della Catania Romana. Problemi e prospettive, in "CATANIA ANTICA, Atti del convegno della SISAC", Pisa-Roma 1996). As many other Roman monuments, lava together with cement mortar and brick was used as the main building material; in the small portion of the arena that is accessible some decorative fragments have been found and preserved. Dating of the building is still uncertain and is based on study and recognition of construction techniques. Along these lines archaeologists have formulated the hypothesis that the Amphitheatre in Catania may date to the mid II century A. C. In Late Antique time King Theodoric allowed its use to quarry because it was already in an advanced state of abandonment. Under Ruger the Normann was used by stripping it of masonry necessary for building the Cathedral. On Reinassance was part of city-wall and in II World War was a rifuge during the bombardaments. It is re-open for free visit since 1997.
Text revised MARIA TERESA DI BLASI, "The Arianne's Thread", Catania 1997. #archeologia #Catania #Comune_di_Catania #edifici_storici #Italia #Monumenti #Sicilia