Thursday, April 26, 2012

Centurions Occupy Colosseum, Fight With Cops

If you've been to the Colosseum in Rome, you've seen the guys in Roman centurion uniforms dunning the tourists for a couple lire or euro in exchange for some photos.  It's cheesy but I never minded - only wished they had a little bit more authentic armor.

This week the routine got exciting: a group of angry centurions occupied the Colosseum before Easter in protest at new rules removing them from archaeological areas, as part of the Soprintendenza Archeologica's initiative to 'clean up' the area from illegal vendors. Yesterday they escalated: centurions climbed up to the second level of the Colosseum and hung banners, demanding legalization of their work. Passing tourists cheered them on as a scuffle broke out between the cops and the reenactors.