(View exact match)stadiumSYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Greek stadion
DEFINITION: In classical Greece, a long narrow track for foot-races and other athletic events. It most often is exactly one "stadium" or 600 feet (180 meters) long a Greek measure equaling 1/8 of a Roman mile. It is an open-air construction with seating probably on raised embankments along the two sides and around the turning end. The Greek stadion is the ancestor of the Roman circus. Surviving examples are at Olympia Delphi Epidauros Athens and Isthmia. Sometimes they were connected with major sanctuaries where athletic games took place but were also part of the public buildings for a Greek city. The first Greek stadiums were in the shape of a horseshoe. They were sometimes cut into the side of a hill as at Thebes Epidaurus and Olympia site of the Olympic Games begun there in the 8th century BC. The Greeks also built hippodrome stadiums similar in layout but broad enough to accommodate four-horse chariot races.
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DEFINITION: An important sanctuary site in central Greece, where the Delphic oracle was located. Situated at the foot of Mount Parnassus, Delphi was thought (by the Greeks) to lie at the center of the earth. The setting has a striking backdrop of cliff-face, rock fissures, and springs. The sanctuary of Apollo held the oracle, which was frequently consulted by all Greek city-states at the start of a new enterprise. In addition to answering consultations by states and individuals (the answers were often couched in obscure hexameter verses which had to be figured out by the questioner), Delphi was a religious and festival center for the different Greek city-states belonging to the Amphictyonic League. The Pythian Games, held at Delphi, became a great national festival. Along a Sacred Way were placed some 20 temple-like treasuries (thesauroi), erected by member states to house valuable offerings. Above, on a terrace supported by a wall of unusual polygonal masonry, stood the great Temple of Apollo, containing in a holy of holies (adyton) a navel-shaped stone (omphalos) marking the center of the earth, and a rock fissure from which emanations were supposed to inspire the Pythian priestess. The virgin priestess would fall into a trance to five (inarticulate) answers to male priests (women were not admitted). The temple was reconstructed after earthquake damage in c 350 BC, and a theater and stadium were added. After c 300 BC the oracle began a slow decline in authority, and Roman rule brought further deterioration and then plundering. The oracle was finally closed by emperor Theodosius in 390 AD as anti-Christian.DodonaCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: An oracle for the god Zeus in northern Greece. The temenos contained bronze dedications and the remains include a theater and Hellenistic stadium.EphesusCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A major port on the west coast of Asia Minor (Turkey), originally an Ionic city of which only a few fragments survive. The city walls are Hellenistic, but the majority of the remains date from the Roman period, when the city was one of the richest and most important in Asia. The temple of Artemis and many important public buildings have been found, including agoras, baths, Library of Celus, arcaded streets, market buildings, gymnasia, stadium, and a theater. The temple, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, was burned in 356 BC. The town was situated strategically in the delta area of the River Cayster, and there is some evidence for occupation from Mycenaean times. Tradition, however, describes the settlement as founded from Athens by King Androklos.EpidaurosCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A Classical Greek city with the sanctuary of the healing god Asklepios, in the Peloponnese. The lower city and harbor are now submerged, but sections of Cyclopean wall are still visible. Epidauros was famous for the sanctuary, especially from the 4th century BC onwards. There were two Doric cult buildings and a fine Doric rotunda with labyrinth. There were baths, a stadium, hospitals and sanitariums, and a magnificent 4th-century BC theater, which is exceptionally well-preserved.GerasaSYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Jerash
DEFINITION: A major Roman city of Judea (modern Jordan), founded by the Seleucids. Extensive remains include colonnaded street, forum, stadium, triumphal arch, theater, and temples to Athena and Zeus. Gerasa was one of the 10 cities of the Decapolis league.MesseneSYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Messini
DEFINITION: Ancient Greek city in southwest Peloponnese, Greece, founded in 369 BC after the defeat of Sparta by Athens. The site includes with Megalopolis, Mantineia, and Argos; the summit of Mt. Ithómi served as the acropolis. The classical city withstood several Macedonian and Spartan sieges. After the Battle of Chaeronea in 338 BC, it was absorbed into the domain of Philip II of Macedonia, and it remained important under the Romans. The Hellenistic agora, theater, stadium, Temple of Artemis, city walls, and council chamber have been excavated.PrieneCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: Small Hellenistic Greek town in Asia Minor, important as settlement of 4th century BC. The lower city was laid out in a Hippodamian grid pattern. There was an acropolis, city walls, agora, bouleuterion, prytaneion, stadium, gymnasium, theater, and temples. It is important for these examples of 4th-century BC and Hellenistic urban architecture. Priene was probably one of the very early Ionian Greek colonies.RhodesCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: Large Ionian/Aegean island, prosperous in Classical times as it was on trade routes from Greece to Egypt and the East. Minoan remains at Ialysus are evidence of early Cretan influence. With the collapse of the Minoan civilization (c. 1500-1400 BC), Rhodes became a powerful independent kingdom with a late Bronze Age culture. Rhodes was occupied by Dorians, mainly from Argos, c 1100-1000 BC. The Rhodian cities of Lindus, Ialysus, and Camirus, along with Cos, Cnidus, and Halicarnassus, belonged to the Dorian Hexapolis (league of six cities) by which the Greeks protected themselves in Asia Minor. The cities of Rhodes traded throughout the Mediterranean and founded colonies in Italy, Sicily, Spain, and Asia Minor. Rhodes supported Rome during its war with Philip V of Macedonia. The island steadily declined after Rome made Delos a free port c 166 BC. During the triumvirate of Antony, Octavian, and Lepidus (43 BC), the conspirator Gaius Cassius plundered Rhodes for refusal to support him. Though it continued for another century as a free city, it never recovered its former prosperity; in about 227 BC a severe earthquake devastated the island. Excavations have unearthed a stadium, odeum, temples, and city walls. At its wealthiest and most powerful in the period c 323-166 BC, Rhodes developed a new form of house colonnaded court (peristyle) with one row of columns higher than the others; provided a grand entrance to the Lindos acropolis sanctuary of Athena, and produced sculptures of quality, including a colossus overlooking the harbor (which fell in the earthquake of 227 BC). Rhodes became important again during the Crusader period, when it was chosen for an important military base.Rome, ancientCATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: Historic city of Italy located on the Tiber River in central Italy. The historical site of Rome on the Seven Hills - the Aventine, Caelian, Capitoline, Esquiline, Palatine, Quirinal, and Viminal - was occupied as early as c 900 BC, but continuous settlement by Indo-European peoples did not take place until the beginning of the 1st millennium BC. By the early 6th century BC, a politically unified city had emerged. The Romans gradually conquered the Italian peninsula, extended their dominion over the entire Mediterranean, and expanded their empire into continental Europe toward the Atlantic. As the capital of this empire, Rome became the site of grandiose palaces, temples, public baths, theaters, stadiums, and other public buildings. The focus of the city was the Forum. Ancient Rome reached the peak of its grandeur and ancient population during the late 1st and early 2nd centuries AD.amphitheatreSYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: amphitheater
DEFINITION: A large-scale Roman arena open to the elements and surrounded by tiers of seats. They were constructed for exhibiting gladiatorial and other public spectacles (military displays, combats, and wild beast fights) to the populace. The earliest were oval and built of wood, later changing to stone construction. Rome's Colosseum has tiered galleries 2-3 stories in height and has provision for covering the arena with shades to protect against rain or sun. Roofing of so wide an expanse was beyond Roman technology. The arena of the Colosseum had a false timber floor, below which there was a labyrinth of service corridors. The animal cages were situated here, linked with pre-tensioned lifts and automatic trapdoors so that participants and animals could be sent up to the floor of the arena with speed and precision. Somehow Roman engineers staged the grand opening by flooding the arena for a full-scale sea battle. Amphitheatres accommodated a great number of spectators (possibly more than 50,000 at the Colosseum). The Romans derived their ideas from the classic Greek theater and stadium and the model was widely copied throughout the Roman empire. It could be erected on any terrain and set inside an urban center. An early example of the Republican period is at Pompeii the Colosseum is of the Imperial model. The fortress of Caerlon and the towns of Caerwent, Cirencester, Colchester, Dorchester, Richborough, and Wroxeter are some British places which had amphitheatres.circusCATEGORY: structure
DEFINITION: A large building in Roman antiquity, generally a long oblong or oval, used for horse and chariot racing and public spectacles. The audience sat in rising tiers of seats around the track and the races were run around a central island. Rome's Circus Maximus, the largest and best-known, was originally built by Tarquinius Priscus, but enlarged various times until late Roman period. It is essentially a Roman development from the Greek stadium or hippodrome.hippodromeSYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: hippodromus; (Roman circus)
DEFINITION: An ancient Greek stadium for horse and chariot racing. The typical hippodrome was dug into a hillside and an embankment was created for supporting seats on the opposite side. The hippodrome was oblong, with one end semicircular and the other square (resembling a U with a closed top). There were tiered seats along the length and curve; at the straight end dignitaries occupied seats. A low wall (spina) ran most of the length of the stadium and divided the course. The spina was decorated with monuments and had sculptures that could be tilted or removed to keep spectators informed of the laps completed by the racers. It is much the same as a stadium, but intended rather for horse- than foot-racing. The hippodrome was the initial model for the Roman circus, which likewise concentrated on chariot-races.palaestraCATEGORY: structure
DEFINITION: In Greco-Roman times, an open-air courtyard surrounded by a colonnade (or porticos) and used for wrestling, gymnastics, and military training. This building consisted of a large central sand-covered courtyard surrounded by changing rooms and washrooms. It is from the Greek word for 'area of wrestling' or 'wrestling school'; it was often part of a gymnasium complex which would include a stadium. It also might be connected to thermae.