Youngest Roman Amphitheatre unearthed in Switzerland

Part of the amphitheatre's side entrance. Image: Kanton Aargau
Part of the amphitheatre's side entrance. Image: Kanton Aargau

Archaeologists have discovered a Roman Amphitheatre in Kaiseraugst, Switzerland, during the construction of a boathouse along the River Rhine.

Objects discovered at the site, including a coin, indicate that the amphitheatre was built in the fourth century. This places it quite late in the Roman Empire – three centuries after Rome’s Colosseum was built and only a century before the fall of Western Rome, which would make this the last Roman amphitheatre ever built that is known to us today.

This arena is only one quarter of the size of the Colosseum, but still indicates the importance of the Castrum Rauracense, a nearby fort and administrative centre. People would have likely watched chariot races, fights, and other public spectacles at this site.

Construction will continue at the site with the amphitheatre being preserved in the ground.

Read the article at Smithsonian Magazine and the Kanton Aargau press release (in German).

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