Roman Theater Ruins - Mainz
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member RakeInTheCache
N 49° 59.587 E 008° 16.649
32U E 448212 N 5538115
Quick Description: The theater site was only first discovered at the beginning of the 20th Century below the Citadel location at the Mainz-South Rail Station.
Location: Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Date Posted: 1/29/2007 12:31:34 PM
Waymark Code: WM1698
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member RakeInTheCache
Views: 188

Long Description:
Throughout the Roman Empire thermal baths and amphitheaters were to be found even in the smallest cities, both physical health and hygiene and arts and entertainment being accorded high value and a necessity for civilized life.

Mainz, known as Mogontiacum, Rome’s most important city in Germania, was no exception. In fact, the stage and auditorium of the Mainz theater was the largest anywhere north of the Alps. More than 10,000 audience members could be accommodated. The theater proportions were gigantic: The stage measured 42 meters – 136.5-feet – wide. The audience area was 116 meters—377-feet –in width : one-and-a-half football fields!

(That’s two-and-a-half times larger than the Metropolitan Opera House, and ten times larger than the Mainz Staatstheater, the city’s principal theater.)

The theater site was only first discovered at the beginning of the 20th Century below the Citadel location at the Mainz-South Rail Station. The theater’s dimensions, based on the size of the beams supporting the structure, allowed engineers to approximate the astonishing proportions of the structure: they dwarfed the imagination!

Obviously, this site was intended for pageantry rather than light comedy, musicals and frivolous spectacles. Some 340- meters or 1,100-feet distant on top of what later became the Citadel was the commemorative gravesite of the Roman field marshal Drusus, the Empire’s prime general in the years of imperial expansion in Germany.

In the years following his non-violent, premature death, the representatives of all 60 of Gaul’s political entities met here in Mogontiacum which was the capital of the province of Upper Germania. Mainz became a political pilgrimage site for both Germania and Gallia where every year the attendees celebrated their common Roman roots and values. Part of the celebrations consisted of an elaborate, massive, civil memorial service commemorating Drusus who had founded Mainz. The show went on for hours, if not days, as indeed befitted the dignity of a “divinity,” or demi-god, Drusus having been a nephew of Caesar.

The site is viewed at a distance as it is still being excavated.
Most Relevant Historical Period: Roman Empire > 27 B.C.

Admission Fee: Free

Opening days/times:

Web Site: [Web Link]

Condition: Some remaining traces (ruins) or pieces

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