Roman Gladiator Excerpt
In Social Studies class we did a project to learn and research about Roman Gladiators. We took our information about gladiators and put them into in ancient journal. My journal is from the gladiators point. We had to put as much research in the journal as possible to show what we learned. Here is an excerpt of my journal
Before fighting I had seen the Collosseum. It was phenomenal. There were awnings, which held a retractable roof to protect us from the sun and hot temperatures. The sailors control the retractable roof because it is made out of a thick, heavy, cloth like material, similar to those on ships. The shape of the Colosseum is shaped from the Roman theatres. That’s why it’s called an amphitheatre because that means two theatres put together. This design was made to make everyone be able to see the show. The building is so tall it made me feel tiny in comparison. It was 160 feet tall. The first three floors had 80 columns and arches to make the light shine through. Also, in order for the spectators to enter there are 76 entries leading to the designated spot for different classes. The seating holds 50,000, who are seated by rich and the poor. The place where we will fight is made with sand so that it is easy to clean up bloodstains. Below the Colosseum held 32 cages filled with exotic animals. These animals were lifted up through a series of lifts and pulleys so that the gladiator can fight them.
There are many types of gladiators that fight at the Colosseum. Retiarius gladiators, who are known as the weakest gladiator, wear a helmet with a crescent on top. They carry a net that they would throw on their opponent and then finish them off by using a small dagger to put up to their face. They also had a trident, a metal stick with three sharp metal parts protruding from the top, which they would use to throw and deflect with. Since these gladiators had very little protection besides a piece of armor that went on their left arm in order to protect the neck and face, a trident, and a sword, they could easily deflect blows. Retiarius Gladiators and Secutor Gladiators were a popular fighting pair. Another gladiator is called an Equites Gladiator. The Equites gladiator—“equites” literally means horseback, entered on a horse. Thraex gladiators were another type. They had a very small shield as well. There are other types that aren’t as major such as Secutor, Andabatus, Thracian, Samnite, Essedarius, Dimachaerius, Velitus, and Laquerius gladiators. Andabatus gladiators have a helmet with no eyeholes and charge on a horse. Thracian gladiators have a small shield, a dagger, and protection on both legs. Samnite gladiators wear a helmet with a crest and visor. They carry a sword and a big shield. Sectuor gladiators charge at their opponent. Essedarius gladiators fight with a horse and chariot. Dimachaerius gladiators had two swords with little armor. Velitus gladiators had only a spear. Laquerius gladiators were similar to Retarius gladiators except they had a lasso not a net. All these gladiators fought well with a certain type of gladiator. For a gladiator to be paired up with a gladiator that had a similar fighting style is very rare. For my fight I am up against a hoplomachus. A hoplomachus has a crescent on its helmet and a griffin’s head. They have a spear to throw as well. They wear gear all the way up to their knees and have a very small shield to protect their waist.
I, a Murmillo gladiator, have a large, oval shield that covers me from my shoulder to my calf. We have great protection, but at times it can be very difficult to maneuver. We have leg protection on one leg, a leather belt, and a dagger. Our helmets have a dorsal fin on top of it. That’s how we get our nickname fish-fighter.