arena

[uh-ree-nuh]
noun
1.
the oval space in the center of a Roman amphitheater for gladiatorial combats or other performances.
2.
a central stage, ring, area, or the like, used for sports or other forms of entertainment, surrounded by seats for spectators: a boxing arena; a circus arena.
3.
a building housing an arena.
4.
a field of conflict, activity, or endeavor: the arena of politics.

Origin:
1620–30; < Latin (h)arēna sand, sandy place, area sanded for combat

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
arena (əˈriːnə)
 
n
1.  a.  an enclosure or platform, usually surrounded by seats on all sides, in which sports events, contests, entertainments, etc, take place: a boxing arena
 b.  (as modifier): arena stage
2.  the central area of an ancient Roman amphitheatre, in which gladiatorial contests and other spectacles were held
3.  a sphere or scene of conflict or intense activity: the political arena
 
[C17: from Latin harēna sand, place where sand was strewn for the combats]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

arena
1620s, "place of combat," from L. harena "place of combat," originally "sand, sandy place," perhaps from Etruscan. The central stages of Roman amphitheaters were strewn with sand to soak up the blood.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang Dictionary

arena

n. [common; Unix] The area of memory attached to a process by `brk(2)' and `sbrk(2)' and used by `malloc(3)' as dynamic storage. So named from a `malloc: corrupt arena' message emitted when some early versions detected an impossible value in the free block list. See overrun screw, aliasing bug, memory leak, memory smash, smash the stack.
FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

arena definition

programming
The area of memory attached to a Unix process by the brk and sbrk system calls and used by malloc as dynamic storage. So named from a "malloc: corrupt arena" message emitted when some early versions detected an impossible value in the free block list.
See overrun screw, aliasing bug, memory leak, memory smash, smash the stack.
[Jargon File]
(1995-12-28)
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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Example sentences
The three arenas are a cruise ship, an outdoor table, and a sports arena.
And surveys evaluating its use in football have found that it is more effective
  than arena signs and logos on uniforms.
Her persona in the skating arena was rough and tumble but she was not at all of
  that type.
Enter a closed arena teeming with zombies and take down as many enemies as
  possible before time expires.
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