‼️ ALBA FUCENS - A SMALL COLOSSEUM IN THE ABRUZZI
This small village in Abruzzo was an important Roman colony, founded in 303 BC. in a strategic position along the Via Valeria, which connected Rome with the Adriatic sea.
The Roman city is still surrounded by polygonal cyclopean walls, built in pre-Roman times by the Equi (according to Titus Livius, or by the Marsii according to other sources). The walls are preserved for a length of almost three kilometers, and a tower also remains. There were four doors in the walls, corresponding to the four cardinal points: the main one was crossed by the Via Valeria.
Like all Roman colonies, Alba Fucens had a Forum, a market (the Macellum), a Basilica, a sanctuary dedicated to Hercules with a nearby theater and thermal Baths.
On top of the highest hill of the city - in practice an acropolis - there was a Temple dedicated to Apollo, on which the magnificent early Christian church of San Pietro in Albe was built. At the foot of the hill a small Amphitheater was built: partly in masonry or leaning on the rock when it was possible, demolishing a part of a previous Roman villa.
The Amphitheater was built after 68 AD, the year of the death of Nevius Sutorious Macronius, who with a testamentary bequest destined his possessions to the construction of the Amphitheater of Alba Fucens (where he was born) as we know from the inscription that can still be read above the main door of the building.
For centuries the building was used as a quarry of building material, but there are still some steps of the cavea, the access stairs, the parapet that protected the spectators during the fights of the gladiators or the shows with ferocious beasts (the Venationes). A subterranean service corridor is also well preserved, which at various points opened onto the arena with doors from which the beasts were likely to arrive for the fights.
A miniature Colosseum