Famous Roman Gladiators
The history of ancient Rome is well known for its interesting stories of famous Roman gladiators, who fought in the infamous, blood-spattered arenas, including the Roman Colosseum, throughout their lives. Some of the most famous Roman gladiators, who fought great gladiatorial combats, include Spartacus, Emperor Commodus, Flamma, Thrimpus, Spiculus, Rutuba, Tetraides, Priscus, and Verus.
Spartacus (c.109 BC-71 BC) was, however, the most popular among all. He was a prisoner of war and a slave from Thrace. He was sent to the ‘ludus’ (gladiatorial training center) located near Capua to be trained. In the later years, he used all his talents and skills to fight the Roman army and he was assisted in this feat by other gladiators, who came from Gaul.
Flamma was another famous roman gladiator who chose to fight as a Secutor even after four defeats in the combats. A Syrian by nationality, Flamma fought nearly 34 times and won 21 combats during his lifetime. Priscus and Verus, the two brave gladiators, are said to have fought for so long in the arena that they both accepted defeat simultaneously. Impressed by their bravery and courage, Emperor Titus spared their lives and they walked from Colosseum as free men.
In the later ages, even the Roman emperors fought as gladiators at different stages of the history. Some of famous Roman emperors, who were gladiators, include Emperor Commodus, Caligula, Geta, Julianus, Titus, Hadrian, and Cracalla. Emperor Commodus (c. 177 -192 AD), who fought as a Secutor, is said to have won a thousand gladiatorial combats during his rule and became the most famous gladiator in ancient Rome.
Famous Roman gladiators won a lot of acclaim and fame. In fact, many Romans considered them to be heroes and went to the extent of worshipping their idols and painting graffiti in their name across the city of Rome.
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