Elevator Used to Raise Lions, Bears into Ancient Colosseum Restored
ROME, June 8 (UPI) — One of the ancient elevators used to raise lions, bears, wolves and other animals into the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, for gladiator battles has been restored.
Restoration efforts took 15 months to complete. The elevator is one of 24 operated manually at the historic Colosseum.
“This must have been an amazing spectacle, made even more amazing by the fact that it took eight men to operate each of the 24 lifts, plus two or three others to keep the ropes in check,” Rossella Rea, archaeological director at the Colosseum, told NBC News. “We are talking about more than 200 people needed to lift animals in the arena.”
Animals raised into the amphitheater, measuring about 620 by 513 feet, also included ostriches, leopards and deer. More than 50,000 spectators could seat the Colosseum when it was operational.
Construction of the Colosseum started at around 70 A.D. but nearly two-thirds of the original structure has been lost due to effects like the natural elements, human neglect and vandalism.