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Roman theater in Lisbon


Visualization of the Roman theater in Lisbon

The Roman theater in Lisbon (in Roman times Olisipo) was founded in the early 1st century CE. His discovery was made in 1798 after the city was destroyed by an earthquake in 1755. Its semi-circular structure blends perfectly with the hill. Due to its location, the object was very clearly visible, especially from the Tagus river side.

The reason for the building of the theater was obvious. It was to promote Roman culture and symbolize the power of Rome. The theater could seat up to 4,000 spectators. The central part of the building: orchestra (semi-circular zone with seats for the city elite); or cavea (lower seats) was integrated into the stone hill. Local stone was used to build foundations, columns; was also painted. The building was certainly in many colors.

The theater was renovated in 57 CE. This was noted on the inscription on the wall of the so-called proscaenium – the wall that separated the stage from the audience.

Scientists have discovered that before the creation of the theater in this place were located the houses. Traces of construction date back to the 2nd century BCE. What’s more, numerous objects and remains of ceramics (also dating back to pre-Roman times) were discovered at the theater. They are available for viewing at the Museum.

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