Stadium (Gr. στάδιον), originally a Grecian course for foot races at the places where games were celebrated, and sometimes in the gymnasia of cities where there were no games. The most celebrated stadia were those at Olym-pia, Delphi, Thebes, Epidaurus, and the Pan-athenaic at Athens. The stadium was an oblong area terminated at one end by a straight line, and at the other by a semicircle, with ranges of seats rising above one another in steps around the circumference. The length of the stadium at Olympia was 600 Grecian ft., equal to 606 ft. 9 in. English; and from continual reference to it as a comparison, this length became used throughout Greece as the standard of measurement for itinerary distances, and was subsequently adopted by the Romans, chiefly for nautical and astronomical measurement. The stadium at Ephesus was 685 ft. long and 200 ft. wide, and it was used not only as the arena for foot races, wrestling, and pugilistic combats, but also for combats with wild beasts.