A ring or a circle is the first thing that will come into a person’s mind when they hear of a circus. It is a Latin word. Circuses have got their history dated to around 2000 years ago when they were first created in the Roman times. A circus is an arrangement of seats in rows tied together in a circle leaving a large empty space in the center. The circus would be used as arenas for various activities. People would sit in the seats while activities took place in the space left at the centre. The first circus ever made was known as the Circus Maximus in Rome. The circus had massive space that could hold up to 250, 000 spectators at any one given time. It was an open air and the stage was big enough to host any activities. The Circus Maximus was used to house events like horse shows, chariot races, battle re-enactments among many other activities. During rest intervals of the main events, jugglers and acrobats were brought in to entertain the audience or the spectators. In some cases they would display exotic animals that were trained.
During the 14th century, the Roman Empire fell. For some time there were no circuses. This led to the introduction of the wandering minstrels. These were small groups of organized entertainers. They used to move from town to town in Europe. They would stage shows in the open air and people would surround them and watch. The set up was similar to that of the Circus only that people did not sit down but formed a circle and watched the performances. These temporary staged events were vital and kept the circuses theme alive.
Performances by the wandering minstrels continued to dominate up to the 16th century. In around this time Queen Elizabeth the 1st. the wandering performing groups were banned as they were said to be a menace and bother to the society. They were restricted to performing at only set places and mostly during the country fairs. This saw the temporary end of circuses. 1n 1768 Philip Astley created the first travelling circus. Though it was a travelling circus it was permanent. This marked the return of circus in Rome. He also planned on a way to make more money by making horses perform in a linear style, he would make them gallop. They galloped in circles beside the seats. The travelling circus was formed in the same way as the earlier circus.