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Gladiatorial Games History Paper

931 words - 4 pages

Gladiatorial Games PaperThe first gladiatorial contest at Rome took place in 264 BC as part of aristocratic funerary ritual, a munus or funeral gift for the dead. Munus is a duty paid by descendants to a dead ancestor. This ceremony was done annually, or in five year intervals. Until the late first century, the gladiatorial games were private ceremonies. The second century AD scholar Festus had suggested that the Gladiatorial games be a substitution to the sacrifice or prisoners on the tombs of great warriors. In the story the lliad, Achilles sacrifices twelve Trojan boys over the tomb of Patroclus. The idea that blood could restore the life of these great warriors was what drove the Romans to do this. When the Gladiatorial games became a public event, it was like football or basketball games to today's everyday citizens. But gladiator games were an all day event, and took place in monstrous amphitheatres. Usually, the Gladiators were prisoners bought by slave owners who trained the slaves to become gladiators and fight in the games. When these games took place, the morning event would be Capital Punishment, also known as ad bestias (which means to the beasts). Capital Punishment was when criminals were put in the ring with wild animals without any weapon or armor to protect them. At noon, Condemned criminals would face off, with only weapons and no armor of any kind, and would fight to the death. No matter what, even if the criminal won the previous round, he would still die. The criminals would keep facing off until they died. No one ever knows what happens to the ultimate winner. In the 4th century, 175 Days were set aside just for the gladiator games in Rome. There were enormous amounts of casualties of humans and animals just to entertain the public and rulers. The stadiums used for these events were enormous. The roman coliseum itself could hold 5,000,046 people. The gladiators who fought in these games were sent to schools called ludi. Ludi schools were usually owned by the state, but sometimes were owned by extremely rich people. The people were very profitable. The men in these school were usually Slaves, Criminals, POW, or men trying to pay off debts/making gladiator a profession. Preperation for the games took quite a long time. The night before the games, the gladiators would have a feast, for it would be the last for some of them. On the day of the games, they would have a parma session, basically parading around the ring. Before each fight, the "referee" would say, ""Hail, Caesar, those who are about to die salute you."There were twelve different types of Gladiators. In a gladiator fight, there was never the same type of gladiators fighting. The twelve different types of gladiators are, Samnite, Secutor, Hoplomschi, Provocator,...


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1892 words - 8 pages : Gladiatorial contests in ancient Rome. History Today. Retrieved January 29, 2014, from Trueman, C. (n.d.). Search the history learning site. History Learning Site. Retrieved from US History. (n.d.). Retrieved January 28, 2014, from Ward, A. M., Heichelheim, F. M., Yeo, C. A., & Perry, J. S. (2010). A history of the Roman people. Boston, MA: Prentice Hall. Where did gladiator fights begin? (n.d.). Discovery Channel. Retrieved January 29, 2014, from

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