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Gladiator: The Complete Guide to Ancient Rome's Bloody Fighters

Gladiator: The Complete Guide to Ancient Rome's Bloody Fighters

Paperback

By (author) Konstantin Nossov

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  • Publisher: The Lyons Press
  • Format: Paperback | 208 pages
  • Dimensions: 191mm x 234mm x 15mm | 454g
  • Publication date: 4 October 2011
  • Publication City/Country: Guilford
  • ISBN 10: 0762773936
  • ISBN 13: 9780762773930
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations, colour illustrations, black & white line drawings, colour line drawings, maps
  • Sales rank: 1,021,065

Product description

Gladiatorial games at first served as a solemn funeral rite to honor noble citizens. At the height of their eight-century reign of popularity, the games-which constantly evolved to include new events such as combat with animals and full-scale naval battles-formed the centerpiece of a huge entertainment industry run by cunning entrepreneurs and regulated carefully by the Roman government. Professional gladiators were highly trained and often highly paid, and their ranks, for a time, included women. Slaves who became gladiators could earn their freedom in as few as four wins. They were the boxers or football players of their day. From the author of Ancient and Medieval Siege Weapons comes this eye-opening new look at one of the most popular spectacles of ancient Rome. A richly detailed, fascinating guide, Gladiator provides a complete, breathtaking tour of gladiator customs and covers every aspect of the gladiator phenomenon-from the types of equipment the different classes of gladiator used, to the high place in society occupied by these sportsmen who were prepared to die.

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Author information

Konstantin Nossov is a noted researcher on ancient and medieval arms, armor, fortresses, and warfare as well as the author of numerous books on these subjects-including Ancient and Medieval Siege Weapons (Lyons Press).

Review quote

"A powerful survey ... offering the newest research on gladiators to revise the standard perception of their combat, equipment, and lives and social status." -Bookwatch "The richest knowledge of the history of this most interesting phenomenon-the history of the Roman arena where, in blood and gold, magnificent performances developed, which devoured enormous sums of money and took away the lives of thousands of human beings and animals. The book is based on a huge amount of ancient resources, as well as the newest findings and research." -Michael Gorelik, author of The Warriors of Eurasia

Back cover copy

From the author of Ancient and Medieval Siege Weapons comes this eye-opening new look at the most popular spectacle of ancient Rome. Gladiatorial games first served as a solemn funeral rite to honor noble citizens. At the height of their eight-century reign of popularity, the games formed the centerpiece of a massive entertainment industry run by cunning entrepreneurs and regulated carefully by the government. Professional gladiators were highly trained, and their ranks even included women for a time. Slaves who became gladiators could earn their freedom in as few as four wins. A gladiator's career lasted about four years with an average lifespan of just eighteen to twenty-five years but some champions survived up to 150 combats. In return for long-term contracts, they earned huge annual salaries. They were the boxers or football players of their day.This richly illustrated, fascinating guide provides a complete, breathtaking tour of gladiator customs and covers every aspect of the gladiator phenomenon, from the types of equipment the different classes of gladiator used to the unique place in society occupied by these fighters prepared to die."