Roman Amphitheater of Sessa Aurunca

Within the municipality of Sessa Aurunca, there is an ancient Roman amphitheater dating back to the 1st century AD. Constructed under the Empire of Augustus, it is one of the most stunning Roman relics to be discovered in the region of Campania, Italy. It was uncovered and restored between 1999 and 2003. The circular seating section, known in Roman times as the “cavea,” is 361 feet (110 m) in diameter and carved into a hillside. It features three tiers of limestone bleachers with seating space for 7,000 to 10,000 viewers. Also discovered were the remains of a velarium, or awning, used to protect the audience from the elements. The 84 columns that supported the building were made of five differently shaded types of marble from the Greek Islands and multiple locations in Africa. Roman amphitheaters were traditionally used for Gladiator competitions, executions and “venatio” events (battles between humans and wild animals for entertainment purposes).