Italy TravelGladiator School in Rome To Be Restored

Gladiator School in Rome To Be Restored
Published on Friday, June 12, 2015 by

800px-Ludus_magnus_Rome_2006Rome’s gladiator barracks, part of the city’s famous Colosseum, may soon be accessible to the public—thanks, in part, to the Kuwaiti government.

An ancient tunnel linking those training chambers to the main arena could be restored with funds from a multi-million dollar grant from Kuwait, writes The Telegraph. The Ludus Magnus (Great Training Facility) was the place where gladiators practiced their skills and maintained their fitness—but it was also in the Ludus Magnus that they donned their helmets and armor and collected their weapons before marching through the tunnel to compete against each other.

Given the thousands of tourists who gaze down at the ruins of the Ludus Magnus each day, it is surprising how rundown the area has become, strewn with trash and difficult to appreciate from its location between two busy streets. Kuwait has a strong interest in Roman history and archaeology, and the grant would allow the Italian government a chance to boost both preservation and tourism, linking one of its best-loved sites with another that has great potential.

Other countries and corporations are also participating in partnerships to restore Italian cultural treasures. Venice’s all-wooden Accademia Bridge will be restored and conserved with funds from eyewear company Luxottica, while Rome’s Spanish Steps have a Bulgari connection to thank for their cleaning. Elsewhere in Rome, Tod’s is paying for the cleaning of the Colosseum and Fendi is funding repairs to the Trevi Fountain.

However many of these projects are ultimately funded, the Ludus Magnus plans may result in the greatest dividends for tourists. How many little boys (and, really, grown men) have imagined themselves in the role Russell Crowe made famous in Gladiator? Now they (and little girls, and women, too) may soon be able to stride down the tunnel and proclaim “My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the armies of the north… “
By Kathy McCabe

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One Response
    • In July 2015 we completed Perillo’s Eat, Pray, Love tour, and enjoyed it. The variety of activities was terrific, albeit at times the itinerary was a bit crowded, especially in the heat of July with a fair amount of walking. Our tour guide, Dante, made the entire trip worthwhile. He was patient, knowledgeable, kind, observant, and generous. We learned so much from him. From a cooking class to wine tastings, the activities and historical sites were marvelous. If anything needed changing it would be the last group activity, which was a lunch and wine tasting at a winery in Ulignano. It was held in the hot mid-afternoon, outside under a canopy. The host, the owner of the winery, was juggling several tour groups at the same time. In the future, we suggest switching the last group activity to a indoor dinner, which on our tour was held the previous evening in Firenze.

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