Twice, I visited the Colosseum, and twice I was flabbergasted by its enormity. Both, in 2004 and 2007, I had the idea to be in the epicenter of the Roman Empire. More pictures will be added in October 2009, when I will visit the Colosseum again. Constructing the Colosseum was ordered by Vespasian in 69 AD, and finished - and ultimately financed - by his son Titus.
Titus used the booty he gained from the capture of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Jewish temple. The Arch of Titus shows this booty, including a huge menorah, to be brought to Rome.
On the inauguration of the Flavian Amphitheatre in 80 AD, for 100 days Titus offered magnificent spectacles, which are mentioned in many ancient sources: naumachiae (the grounds were flooded to perform waterbattles), munera (gladitorial combat), hunting spectacles with 5,000 animals of different species killed in one single day (read my message 'Martialis of Bilbilis'). The above picture - taken at a small exhibition inside the Colosseum - shows a tiger being used for a performance.