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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Retiarius and Laquerarius

Retiarius: Retiarius gladiators were styled after a fisherman and their "fish," so to speak, was the Secutor gladiator. The retiarius-secutor pairing was one of the best loved matchups in the arena. The retiarius went into combat armed with a trident, a dagger and a weighted net. They were the most lightly armored of the gladiators, typically wearing only an arm guard (manica), a shoulder guard of bronze (galerus) and a loincloth. The galerus protected the neck and most of the head from lateral blows. The retiarius made up for his lack of armor with speed and agility to avoid attacks and wait for the opportunity to strike. The retiarius first tried to throw his net over his opponent to ensnare him or his weapon. If successful, he'd move in for the kill. Mostly, the net would miss and the retiarius would switch to using the trident with two hands. The trident permitted the gladiator to jab and keep his opponent at a distance. The retiarius would also try to to catch his adversaries blade between the points of his weapon or press the edges of his opponent's shield. With it's long reach, the retiarius often targeted his opponent's legs with the trident.

The first figure up is my favorite. Romans loved the foreign and exotic.  Amongst the hundreds of thousands of prisoners in the Empire, there were bound to be tattooed Celts. I'm certain the crowd would have gone mad seeing a tattooed gladiator in the area.















Laquerarius: Little is known about this gladiator type except that he was equipped with a lasso and spear.  They appeared late in the gladiator games and there is speculation that the use of the lasso was reflective of a barbarian tribe that used the lasso in combat. Perhaps he was the prototype cowboy!  We'll call him "The Gladiator with No Name" and exit with 
Ennio Morricone's theme from "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly."