It had been many years since I last visited the Guildhall of London, which is well worth a visit, by the way, at the left of the photo above. But my goal was the Art Gallery, completed in 1999, to replace buildings lost in the Blitz. While excavations were underway, the remains of a Roman Amphitheatre were discovered and that was my initial goal.
To enhance the very few actual remains (look to the right above at what is left of a wall), illuminated drawings illustrate the appearance from the time of the Romans in Londinium, which lasted four centuries.
Above and below, fragments of walls and entrances on the east side of the original amphitheatre.
Representation of gladitorial combat in the arena.
A skull found here with evidence of injuries consistent with those probably suffered by gladitorial combatants.
Maps show where the arena was located and the size of the city of Londinium...remember the Romans were in Britain for four centuries. From the villas unearthed in the south to Aqua Sulis (Bath) to Hadrian's Wall in the north, Britain has many sites excavated to show how the Romans lived, worshiped, and fought, and died.
And finally, follow the money. What was the price of enjoying the spectacle? These coins date from the 2nd century AD.
Look in next week to see some of the art from "upstairs."
Victoria Hinshaw, Author