If I disappear for a month after Christmas, this is why

A childhood dream of mine has been made flesh, or rather plastic brick. Just in time for people including yours truly to start begging for it for Christmas, LEGO is releasing its newest brick set: the Roman Colosseum. At 9,036 pieces, this is the largest set Lego has ever produced, colossal, you might say. The previous record-holder was the iconic Star Wars Millenium Falcon at 7,500 pieces.

One for the history buffs as well as the LEGO fans, this authentic LEGO brick recreation features many of the true-to-life details found at the real historical icon, including a recreation of the three distinct stories from the Colosseum, each made up of the columns of the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian orders.

These columns have been faithfully recreated in LEGO brick form using a variety of creative building techniques, including decorative volutes that have been created using a re-coloured LEGO roller skate element that has been turned upside down to create an authentic look.

The Colosseum even includes 80 ‘ribs’ in the spectator stands (the exact same number as the original) and three different shades of brick to replicate the different columns and aging of the almost 2,000 year old landmark.

The LEGO Colosseum measures 10.5″ high, 20.5″ wide and 23.5″ deep and is built on an oval base. The base also replicates original features like the travertine paving stones and pine trees that lined the walkway In order to display architectural features like the orders of columns to their best advantage and convey the sense of monumentality in a miniature, the model’s cross-section is steeper than the proportion in the real Colosseum.

It makes for a striking display whether you position it with the northern side, the more complete wall with all the stories and columns, or the southern side whose low wall exposes the intricate interior from the elaborate hypogeum structures under the arena floor to the back of the vertically exaggerated north wall. Even though it’s huge, the LEGO Colosseum is still light enough to be easily picked up and examined. You can look through the arches, see the sunlight shine through them.

The set goes on sale November 27th, Black Friday, for $549.99, so unless Santa is a lot flusher than I thought, you can heave a sigh of relief that I won’t go AWOL after all. Buyers on Black Friday weekend will get a gift with purchase of a little chariot to go with your new Colosseum.


Then there’s this video. I just cannot even deal with how awesome it all is.

17 thoughts on “If I disappear for a month after Christmas, this is why

  1. 🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱
    PerLego: “HIC SVNT LEONES”
    🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱 🐱

    …but..Wait! 😮

  2. Surely there are enough followers to make your dream come true. If you could put up a way to donate to your blog, and we all gave you a bit
    for all the work you put into making this blog possible,you’d have enough to buy the Lego set.

  3. Seneca’s ‘Epistulae morales ad Lucilium’ –i.e. to Lucilius Junior, born 6AD– Liber I, epistula VII, ‘On Crowds’ 😉

    “[…] Nothing is so damaging to good character as the habit of lounging at the games; for then it is that vice steals subtly upon one through the avenue of pleasure. What do you think I mean? I mean that I come home more greedy, more ambitious, more voluptuous, and even more cruel and inhuman, – because I have been among human beings.

    By chance I attended a midday exhibition, expecting some fun, wit, and relaxation, – an exhibition at which men’s eyes have respite from the slaughter of their fellow-men. But it was quite the reverse. The previous combats were the essence of compassion; but now all the trifling is put aside and it is pure murder. The men have no defensive armour. They are exposed to blows at all points, and no one ever strikes in vain. Many persons prefer this programme to the usual pairs and to the bouts “by request.” Of course they do; there is no helmet or shield to deflect the weapon. What is the need of defensive armour, or of skill? All these mean delaying death.

    In the morning they throw men to the lions and the bears; at noon, they throw them to the spectators. The spectators demand that the slayer shall face the man who is to slay him in his turn; and they always reserve the latest conqueror for another butchering. The outcome of every fight is death, and the means are fire and sword. This sort of thing goes on while the arena is empty. You may retort: “But he was a highway robber; he killed a man!” And what of it? Granted that, as a murderer, he deserved this punishment, what crime have you committed, poor fellow, that you should deserve to sit and see this show? In the morning they cried “Kill him! Lash him! Burn him! Why does he meet the sword in so cowardly a way? Why does he strike so feebly? Why doesn’t he die game? Whip him to meet his wounds! Let them receive blow for blow, with chests bare and exposed to the stroke!” And when the games stop for the intermission, they announce: “A little throat-cutting in the meantime, so that there may still be something going on!

    Come now; do they not understand even this truth, that a bad example reacts on the agent? Thank the immortal gods that you are teaching cruelty to a person who cannot learn to be cruel. The young character, which cannot hold fast to righteousness, must be rescued from the mob; it is too easy to side with the majority. Even Socrates, Cato, and Laelius might have been shaken in their moral strength by a crowd that was unlike them; so true it is that none of us, no matter how much he cultivates his abilities, can withstand the shock of faults that approach, as it were, with so great a retinue.

    Much harm is done by a single case of indulgence or greed; the familiar friend, if he be luxurious, weakens and softens us imperceptibly; the neighbour, if he be rich, rouses our covetousness; the companion, if he be slanderous, rubs off some of his rust upon us, even though we be spotless and sincere. What then do you think the effect will be on character, when the world at large assaults it! You must either imitate or loathe the world. But both courses are to be avoided; you should not copy the bad simply because they are many, nor should you hate the many because they are unlike you. […]”

  4. M’Lady Livius,

    Truly marvelous! I hope Santa is good to you this year.

    Roman ruins are not exactly to my taste, and being a penurious Scot, I balk at spending that much on what is essentially a toy. But if the Lego people were ever to take a stab (so to speak) at doing Stirling Castle, I might be tempted.

    My real ancestor John le Nae Peer was one of the 26 surviving gentleman defenders of Stirling against Edward I’s 1304 siege. [Historians tend to overlook 50 common soldiers and a mess of non-combatant servants who also survived.] This was where the largest trebuchet ever built, the War Wolf, was used against the Scots. Were I to have a model of the castle, I certainly would designate one of those tiny little plastic figures as my ancestor. And I would need a suitable trebuchet model.

    It was an honor to visit Stirling Castle a few years ago, though most of what we see today is post-siege.

    Yours Aye,

    Mungo Napier, Laird of Mallard Lodge (SCA) 🦆

  5. I think you should do a ‘go fund me’ we will all chip in. In the meantime you should shop around for a table that isn’t much more than 20″ around so that it can always be displayed on it and has the look of a piece of art.

  6. OMG I may have to get this for my son. and as others have said, would chip in for you to get as well. Lions and chariots too?

  7. You should at least have the standard Paypal link so people can donate to the blog in general. I would be happy to contribute to the Colosseum fund. You could publish building updates.

  8. Wow,truly awesome example of Lego creativity — even for a limited market due to the cost.

    Excellent comment by Valeria Messalina. Seneca was speaking a truth that certainly resonates with our age of political-correctness on one hand while the other looks for the most venal and debased entertaiments on social media and television. Are we much different from the mob at the Arena; perhaps not as much as we would like to think!

  9. Ceterum (re)commendo: ‘Asterix and the Laurel Wreath’ from 1971:

    Their own lawyer takes it for granted that they will be thrown to the lions. Asterix, however, even speaks for his own prosecution, carefully outlining all the “wrongdoings” committed by himself and Obelix. The whole audience is deeply moved by his plea, and the Gauls finally succeed in being sentenced to death.

    The plea itself has notably been analyzed in a separate piece by Wolfram Ax, and it gives insight into Roman oratory used in court as it gives insight into Goscinny’s genius :notworthy:

  10. Ita est, Maud Karlsdottir!

    Ad bestias!!!

    Num estis obliti bestias? Oportet cibaria praebere sine dilatione animabilus miserandis, quae plane ignorant, hominum justitia quid sit!

    (i.e. those animals must be protected, as they cannot defend themselves or plea for damnation. Of course, they have to be included).

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