Erdogan moves to ban word ‘arena’ from sports stadiums as un-Turkish – Telegraph.co.uk

He said Akif Cagatay Kilic, the sports minister, had already been instructed to carry out the order.

“What does arena mean? We don’t have such a thing in our language,” Mr Erdogan added, urging people to examine the “meaning and interpretation” of arenas saying the word was “neither polite nor elegant”.

Mr Erdogan’s disdain for the word is thought to stem from Ancient Roman arenas, where gladiators would fight to the death in front of baying crowds and be torn apart by animals for the amusement of onlookers.

In modern Turkey, arenas are much more likely to be used as venues to watch mainstream sports such as football, rather than gladiatorial combat.

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