Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An oval or round structure having tiers of seats rising gradually outward from a central open space or arena.
  • n. An arena where contests and spectacles are held.
  • n. A level area surrounded by upward sloping ground.
  • n. An upper, sloping gallery with seats for spectators, as in a theater or operating room.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A semi-circular acoustic backdrop behind performers for an outdoor venue.
  • n. A completely circular outdoor arena; a classic European amphitheatre.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An oval or circular building with rising tiers of seats about an open space called the arena.
  • n. Anything resembling an amphitheater in form; as, a level surrounded by rising slopes or hills, or a rising gallery in a theater.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In anc. Rom. arch., an edifice devoted to the exhibition of gladiatorial contests and the combats of wild beasts.
  • n. Anything resembling an amphitheater in form, as an oval or circular building with seats rising behind and above each other around a central open space, or a natural area surrounded by rising ground; in horticulture, a sloping arrangement of shrubs and trees.
  • n. The uppermost gallery of a modern theater.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an oval large stadium with tiers of seats; an arena in which contests and spectacles are held
  • n. a sloping gallery with seats for spectators (as in an operating room or theater)

Etymologies

Middle English amphitheatre, from Latin amphitheātrum, from Greek amphitheātron : amphi-, amphi- + theātron, theater; see theater.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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