The Arena of Verona is not only a magnificent and famous Roman amphitheater from the first century AD, but also one of the best preserved ancient buildings in Italy and the world. In this structure – which is 2,000 years old! – In fact, it still hosts operas, concerts and some of the most impressive events in the world.
Every artist dreams of performing in the Arena of Verona and every spectator knows that the show in the Arena of Verona begins as soon as he sets foot in Piazza Bra, the largest square in Verona, which, in addition to the famous Arena, also houses Palazzo Barbieri and the Gran Guardia.
The Arena of Veronawhich we can admire today, is the result of 2000 years of history, of constant material erosion, but also of an earthquake that struck the city in the 12th century. From the actual outer facade, the outer ring, then only four arches remained – the so-called “wing”, which consists of three orders of arches of different heights to create the “floating” effect in the eyes of the viewer. The exterior facade that we see today has instead two rows of arches and they are also of different heights.
The inner structure includes the stage, surrounded by the rows of seats where the audience sat – and still sits today. The cavea consists of three concentric galleries, each of which formed a sequence of floors. Today, these rows of seats can accommodate about 15,000 spectators, but originally the Arena of Verona was built for an audience of 30,000 people! The capacity is reduced today for security reasons, but – just like 1,000 or 2,000 years ago – the inflow and outflow of the public takes place without congestion thanks to the dozens of entrances placed under the arches along the entire perimeter of the arena.
Historical center of Verona, Arena di Verona, Veneto, Italy. (Photo © Shutterstock.com)
1. why is the amphitheater of Verona called Arena?
The name “Arena” comes from the central part of the amphitheater covered with sand, from the Latin “arena”.
2. curiosities and legends around the Arena di Verona
As in all Roman amphitheaters, the Arena of Verona hosted the Velationes, the performances in which wild and exotic animals were hunted and killed, and the even more famous fights between gladiators. Over the centuries, numerous legends have been formed about the construction of such an imposing structure. The most interesting is the one that tells about a Veronese who, sentenced to death, promised the city leaders to build a huge building where shows could be held. in just one night! To realize his plan, the man sold his soul to the devil, but regretted his decision that night. He then sent away all the devils from hell who were working on the opera two hours before sunrise – two hours before they could finish the opera: that is why the outer ring of the Arena of Verona – the wing – is incomplete.
3. is it possible to visit the Arena of Verona?
You can visit the Arena of Verona like any other sight. You can buy tickets – also online – at a price of about 10 euros (with discounts for children, the elderly, residents of Verona and other categories). Opening hours are from 9 am to 6 pm, but the best time is in the morning when there are fewer tourists and you can enjoy the architecture and atmosphere in peace. But the real experience of the Arena di Verona is just attending an event in the amphitheater. It is a unique experience! Concerts, operas, performances get an extra value when they take place in the Arena of Verona. Whether you admire the majesty of the monument or attend a concert, in the Arena of Veronathe magic is guaranteed!
Text © Italien.blog – No responsibility taken for the correctness of the information
Aida, Opera Festival, Arena di Verona, Veneto, Italy. (Photo © travelview / Shutterstock.com)