The Theaters of Pompeii

The two centers of entertainment in Pompeii were the Amphitheater, located in the eastern part of the city, and the Theaters located further west, near Port Stabiana.

From the VI century BC. C. Greeks used  natural slopes were used to construct the stands. In Pompeii the neighborhood of the theaters included several important buildings.

The Teatro Grande is dated the second century BC. It has preserved its original appearance despite the constant remakes, including the restoration of the Augustan age. The scene that was originally with floors in imitation of the front of a building, was entirely rebuilt after the damage reported by the earthquake of 62 AD. C. In the Augustan era were built parodoi, side aisles covered access to the orchestra, gaining on them of the boxes (tribunalia) for guests of honor. One of parodoi is connected to a courtyard with a staircase leading to the Triangular Forum.

The cavea (tiers) is divided into three areas, that were said: ima reserved for senators, media to the guilds of the middle class, and summa for the populace.

This theater could accommodate about 5000 spectators, was restored during the Bourbon age and has, unfortunately, recently had a questionable vigorous action.

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The Odeion or Small Theatre, formed a homogeneous group with the Teatro Grande, it could accommodate about 500 spectators, was smaller then the previous and covered with a roof. Was used for musical auditions, although some recent speculations recognize it as a building for political meetings. The construction of the building around 80 BC was financed by the two magistrates C. Q. Valgus and M. Porcius. Even here there were tribunalia intended for privileged spectators, and the auditorium was divided into three sectors. The decorations were very elegant, it is shown by the marbled orchestra and the two stone telamons found on the steps.

theater map Pompeii
Map of the theater district
Teatro grande
The big Theater in Pompeii

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Published by Emiliano's Archaeological Tours

My name is Emiliano Tufano, I am an archaeologist and tour guide. I run an organization providing archeaological and cultural tours in Campania. When I was ten years old I found a piece of painted pottery on a small piece of land belonging to my family, which is located nearby the ancient Greek city of Paestum. For the whole of that day I kept this piece of history in my hands. I remember that it was decorated with a black figured scene of a Satyr driving a biga. The feeling I had when realized it was a genuine antique object was very strong, and I started asking myself many questions about the people who occupied that area across the centuries and, particularly, about the man who made such a beautiful piece of work. Since then I started collecting all sorts of pots and stones that I found while I wandered through the countryside. I used to divide my finds simply on the basis of their shape and color. They were the first steps of me becoming an archaeologist. At school, history was my favorite subject; therefore my decision of which degree course to choose was an easy one, Archaeology. Today, archaeology is my profession and my passion. Throughout the years I developed skills in fieldwork and academic research. I participated as a field director in several excavation projects of fundamental importance across Italy and I was engaged in significant academic research projects in Sicily, Tunisia and Libya. I now fulfill my ambition with a PhD project about the Sicilian prehistory. However, my interests go beyond just the history. I have a strong creative side and I love photography, and I write articles for a newspaper in my local area, play football and enjoy diving. I enjoy traveling and have been to many different countries, where I always make particular efforts to learn as much of the local language and culture as possible. In 2010 I became qualified to work as a tourist guide of the Campania Region, and today I offer guided tours in Italian, English and Spanish. I live my job with passion and professionalism. With me you can visit the wonders of Campania: the Vesuvian archaeological sites of Pompeii, Herculaneum and other beautiful sites, such as the historic centers of Naples, Caserta and Salerno, the Amalfi Coast and Sorrento Coast, all the major churches and museums. Through exclusive and tailor-made tours, according to your requirements, you will receive quality service and cultural enrichment.

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