2 American Women Face 20,000 Euro Fine for Defacing Colosseum

Oh no, they didn’t. Two American tourists have been busted scratching their initials into the ancient walls of Rome’s Colosseum with a coin. The Californian women, aged 21 and 25, haven’t been named, but will be given a hefty charge.

Other tourists saw what they were doing and told the guards.

The girls left their 8-inch-wide J and N scratched into an inner wall of the Colosseum, and then took a selfie.

"Pollice Verso (Thumbs Down)" by Jean-Léon Gérôme, 1872. In the colosseum, obviously. (Image: Wikimedia Commons/ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jean-Leon_Gerome_Pollice_Verso.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Jean-Leon_Gerome_Pollice_Verso.jpg)

“Pollice Verso (Thumbs Down)” by Jean-Léon Gérôme, 1872. In the Colosseum, obviously. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

The 2,000-year-old arena is one of Rome’s most prized historical sites. The place where gladiators once fought in front of crowds of Romans is now visited by millions of tourists each year.

They aren’t the first to deface it, you can see graffiti on interior walls, scratched and spray painted. Just last year a Russian tourist was caught defacing the monument and was charged 20,000 euros (over $21,000).

American tourists aren’t alone in behaving badly at important archeological sites around the world, and definitely don’t have the worst reputation as far as tourists go.

Last week, a video went viral of a mainland Chinese tourist in Thailand kung-fu kicking a large bell in a revered Buddhist temple.

In fact, Mainland Chinese might win the bad tourist prize.

How about that boy who wrote “Ding Jinhao was here” on the 3,500-year-old Egyptian statue?

Here are some other funny stories about tourists totally screwing up!

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