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Eine Besucherin und eine Besucher bestaunen eine Vitrine im Prunksaal

You decided! The special object for the topic "Bread and circuses: Fun and games in ancient Egypt" is the "An Ancient Circus Programme". From 12 May 2020 the object will be shown at the State Hall. Thank you very much for your vote.

Preview: The next voting will take place from 23 March until 5 April 2020.

Object 3: An Ancient Circus Programme

Papyrus, 6th century AD.

Chariot races were very popular in all the major cities of the Roman Empire, yet no more than a handful of circus programmes have survived on papyrus. Such programmes announced the course of the exciting spectacles, which followed a similar structure everywhere. The games were opened with an invocation of Tyches (the goddess of fortune), then a procession walked along the racetrack, probably including an introduction of the horses and charioteers, with perhaps also a presentation of a statue of the goddess of victory or the prizes. The climax was formed by several chariot races. Between the individual rounds, showmen and entertainers provided variety. In this programme, the races are not specifically named, but the programme filling the breaks is announced in detail: tightrope walkers, acrobats, actors and stilt walkers.

 

 

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