Remains of the Games

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A big stadium game wouldn’t be the same without the snacks and drinks to consume while watching the excitement on the field.

The spectators at gladiatorial combats in ancient Rome’s Colosseum felt that way, too, ArtNet reported.

Italian archaeologists recently discovered the remnants of ancient snacks, coins and other artifacts while exploring the complex drainage system beneath the historic arena.

Researchers initially began exploring the Colosseum’s sewers last year to understand how the hydraulic systems that the showrunners created flooded the amphitheater’s tunnels and produced water spectacles.

But during their excavations, they unearthed the remains of various fruit, including figs and grapes, that were possibly thrown by tens of thousands of spectators that watched the shows.

The team also found a number of ancient coins, including a rare orichalcum sestertius coin, which was produced around 170-171 CE to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Emperor Marcus Aurelius’ ascension to power.

The bones of bears and big cats recovered during the search are most likely from animals forced to fight while guests ate their snacks. The researchers also discovered dice and a pin made of bone, and garment parts, such as shoe nails, leather, and studs.

Federica Rinaldi, the Colosseum’s lead archaeologist, said the discoveries illustrate the “experience and habits of those who came to this place during the long days dedicated to the performances.”

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