The Colosseum is a grand amphitheater located in Rome that was constructed between CE 70 and 72, commissioned as a gift to the Roman people by the Flavian emperors. The purpose of the Colosseum was to host various events, including gladiator fights, contests between men and animals, and mock battles. The arena measured 83 meters in length by 48 meters in width and demonstrated all of the ancient architectural “orders.”
Roman art was employed to glorify the ruler and his family and to exhibit shifts in leadership. The phases in Imperial Roman art are named after specific leaders or significant dynasties. This use of artwork was prevalent during the time of the Colosseum’s construction, when the prevailing attitude in Rome was one of strength and power. The Colosseum came to symbolize the power, ingenuity, and brutality of the Roman Empire.