The public places of Agrigentum

Moments of leisure: the theatre

The ekklesiasterion of Agrigento
The ekklesiasterion of Agrigento was built around the 4th-3rd century B.C. as the seat of the city assemblies. Originally, it was supposed to be circular, with a capacity of around 3000 people. Today, there is only one portion of the cavea, of semicircular shape, with nineteen concentric rows of steps. The structure is made in agrigentine calcarea stone and is typical ochre in colour. The continuity of the last 7 rows of seats in the top of the cavea is interrupted by a building known as the Oratory of Falaride, built around the First century BC by the Romans who had conquered the city.

In 2016, after almost five centuries of research, the Theatre of Agrigentum was found in the south-east corner of the forum, after some accounts of the historian Tommaso Fazello had certified its presence, describing it as already heavily stripped in the 16th century.
A fundamental element of transition from Greek to Roman culture, the theatre was a place of entertainment par excellence for citizens, where they attended games, fights and some religious festivals.
The structure of the theatre in Agrigentum covered a little more than half of the front of the square on which it was located, and even today we can still see how it faced the hill with the surrounding temples, a wonderful background for the entertainment of the Agrigentines and a source of pride for the whole city. From the materials used for the construction, we can date the structure back to the beginning of the 2nd century BC.
On the western side, some substructures were found to support the steps where the spectators would be seated, while nothing is left of the orchestra or scene. The culture of theater and entertainment was always very alive in Sicily, to the more recent times: the link with the theater of the ancient Greeks continues to live, every year, the greek theater in Syracuse , while the Opera dei Pupi , a form of much more modern theater, was declared Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

The Roman necropolis

Works for the muses: the mosaics of the Hellenistic-Roman quarter

The Oratory of Phalaris

The tomb of Theron

Vegetation in the Gardens

The cult of the Emperor

The theatre of origins

The Kolymbetra Garden

Politics comparison: Akragas and Agrigentum

Breathing in world heritage together

An exceptional discovery: the thermal baths of Agrigentum

The sarcophagus of the Child

The Hellenistic-Roman quarter

The provincial layout of Sicily

The ancient port of Agrigentum

The forum in the city of the Akragantines

The life of young people in Roman times

The wellness centres of the Romans

Hellenistic heritage on the streets of Agrigentum

From Akragas to Agrigentum

The domus, guardians of private life

Roman affairs

The centre of politics in Agrigentum

Mens sana in corpore sano: the gymnasium of Agrigento

The Living Almond Museum

Cicero’s account: Agrigentum in In Verrem

A Sanctuary for the Latin gods

The Punic Wars and the final conquest of Akragas

The Romans settle in Agrigentum

The gods of Agrigento

Moments of leisure: the theatre

The driver of Agrigentum’s well-being