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amphitheater (n.)

late 14c., from Latin amphitheatrum, from Greek amphitheatron "double theater, amphitheater," neuter of amphitheatros "with spectators all around," from amphi "on both sides" (from PIE root *ambhi- "around") + theatron "theater" (see theater). Classical theaters were semi-circles, thus two together made an amphi-theater. They were used by the Romans especially for gladiatorial contests and combats of wild beasts.

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Definitions of amphitheater from WordNet

amphitheater (n.)
a sloping gallery with seats for spectators (as in an operating room or theater);
Synonyms: amphitheatre
amphitheater (n.)
an oval large stadium with tiers of seats; an arena in which contests and spectacles are held;
Synonyms: amphitheatre / coliseum
From wordnet.princeton.edu