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* A pair of Roman bronze Fighting Gladiators, Roman Imperial Period, ca. 1st - 3rd Century AD

RB1902

Two gladiators opposed in combat, of Murmillo type, each wearing a cassis crista-type helmet, padded arm guard (manica), shin guards (ocrea), holding scutum-type shields. Standing on a flat base, with both sides carved.

The murmillo (also sometimes spelled "mirmillo" or "myrmillo") was a type of gladiator during the Roman Imperial age. The murmillo-class gladiator was adopted in the early Imperial period to replace the earlier Gallus, so named after the warriors of Gaul. The murmillo's fighting style was suited for men with large muscular arms and strong heavy shoulders needed to carry the weight of the shield and sword and heavy helmet. As a result, they were usually big tall men and always very muscular. They depended on their strength and endurance to survive the battle against foes who were more suited to attacking. The tower shield gave them an edge in defense and the gladius enabled them to thrust and swing at enemies when in close range.

Dimensions: Height: 2 inches (5 cm), Length: 2 1/4 inches (5.7 cm), Length with mount: 2 3/4 inches (6.9 cm)

Condition: Intact and in good condition. Mounted on acrylic base.

Provenance: Ex-private collection of R.B., Southern Germany. Ex Gorny & Mosch Auction 124, 2003, 271.


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