This is an excerpt from the Journal of a Roman Gladiator project I made in Social Studies class. We were supposed to pretend to be a gladiator in ancient Rome and create a journal explaining the details of gladiators, what Rome was like at that time, and important facts about the colosseum.
Roman Gladiator Journal Excerpt
May 5, 156 C.E.
It’s been 18 days and I’ve gone through a lot. First of all, when the prisoners were split up and given to the slave dealers, groups of 5 or 6 of us Gaul’s were put up on a stand for auction and Romans started yelling out pricing. It was completely humiliating. And then people with diseases or any type of problem had to hold up a sign pointing out there defects, isn’t that crazy! I don’t know how long the auctions went for because I was one of the first ones sold. An upper class looking man bought me for a lot higher price than everyone else was offering but, I don’t know what that means, it’s not like he knew if I was going to be a good slave or not. The man brought me to his elaborate domus and the first thing he did was measure my height and weigh me, 6’2’’ 240 lbs. he wrote on a piece of paper. He started to grin a little a bit and I was a little scared because of the circumstances. He told me I was lucky and that I could have been sold to do slave work which I was confused about since I thought I was just bought to do slave work. The next day, my owner Antonius brought me to ludus gladiatorius, or gladiator school. So I’m going to be a gladiator I thought, this is insane. I was very surprised and nervous for I thought I would automatically die in the next week. Antonius brought me to the lanista, a retired gladiator that was going to train me. He told the lanista to train me hard and that this is an expensive investment that could be big. When Antonius left, the doors were locked and I had a feeling that I wasn’t leaving this place for a long time. I was a pupil in the school and not all of the pupils were slaves. Some of them were criminals, bankrupt people, poor people and even volunteers trying to make some money. I have been exercising hard every day and am actually being given good, plentiful meals. I haven’t even gotten whipped yet, you get whipped if you don’t train hard. I practice with a wooden sword and hit a man of straw over and over again each day until my arms are in serious pain. I was eventually given 2 wooden swords to practice with in each hand because the trainer thought I might like it better and I did, it felt more natural. I have just finished another days training and am feeling more and more comfortable with the weapons as time goes on.