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Subscriptions make great gifts! More Donate to the Cause of Political Humor! Free Newsletter! Contact us Search. News roasted by some of the best independent satire writers on the web in Now you can enjoy your news heavily roasted, by some of the best independent satire writers on the Web. The retiarius wore minimal armour; unlike other gladiator types, he wore no helmet, greaves, or shield. He wore a manica on his left arm, where other gladiators wore it on the right;  this allowed him to more fluidly make a right-handed cast of his net.
The device protected the upper arm, head and face when the retiarius kept his left side to his opponent. They weigh about 1. In the Eastern Roman Empire in later years, some retiarii wore a chainmail manica instead of the galerus. This mail covered the arm and upper chest.
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Besides these items, the retiarius wore only a loincloth subligaculum held in place by a wide belt and gaiters or, as images show in lieu of the loincloth, a tunic that left the right shoulder uncovered. The retiarius was traditionally pitted against a secutor or, possibly on rare occasions, a murmillo. They were also known as contraretiarii "those against the net-man". In skilled hands, the net was a useful weapon. The retiarius 's primary objective with it was to capture his opponent.
He held his trident and dagger in his left hand, careful to keep the trident's prongs pointed downward to avoid snagging it in the mesh. In the later image, however, Kalendio lies on the ground, wounded, and raises his dagger to surrender. The inscription above Kalendio shows the sign for "null", implying that the match organisers ordered him killed.
The net could ensnare the secutor 's weapon to disarm him  and snag away his shield to put him at a significant disadvantage. In such danger, the retiarius could sever the drawstring from his wrist with his dagger. Extant imagery rarely shows gladiators of the type with a net, yet the class is named for the device, and Juvenal uses the net to quickly identify a retiarius in his satires.
The discrepancy may simply be a case of artistic licence ; other types of gladiator are often shown without their weapons but can be assumed to be holding them due to their stance, and a net is a particularly difficult weapon to depict.
The lack of nets in retiarius images may show gladiators who have already lost the weapon in the fight. Another possibility is that some retiarii simply did not use nets. In most bouts, the retiarius probably had to resort to fighting with just his trident and dagger,  placing him at a disadvantage. Wielded two-handed, the weapon could land powerful blows. This reduced his field of vision and gave the retiarius an advantage with his speed.
Images from the Eastern Roman Empire show scissores wearing a tubular arm-guard in lieu of a shield. The guard fits over the left hand and ends in a hooked, knife-like blade that was probably intended to parry the net and trident or to snag and pull away the net. Scissores who succeeded in this probably dropped the hook weapon and fought with just a sword. The retiarius held the dagger in his left hand.
Pompeius, winner of nine crowns, born in Vienna, twenty-five years of age. His wife put this up with her own money for her wonderful spouse. In some contests, a retiarius faced two secutores at the same time.
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He stood on a bridge or raised platform with stairs and had a pile of fist-sized stones to lob at his adversaries and keep them at bay. The secutores tried to scale the structure and get at him. The platform called a pons , "bridge" may have been constructed over water. Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. Online version accessed 1 February From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Translation from Ramsay.
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Wiedemann 26 gives an alternate translation for the latter graffito: "the netter of girls in the night". Dutton, , Chap. The odds on the retiarius are customarily between five to three and two to one. Auguet, Roland  Cruelty and Civilization: The Roman Games. London: Routledge. Baker, Alan Da Capo Press. Braund, Susanna Morton, ed. Satires : Book I.
Cambridge University Press. Cerutti, Steven M. Richardson, Jr. Winter Connolly, Peter, and Hazel Dodge Oxford University Press.
Duncan, Anne Performance and Identity in the Ancient World. New York: Cambridge University Press. Edwards, Catherine Follain, John 15 December Accessed 31 January Futrell, Alison The Roman Games. Malden, Massachusetts: Blackwell Publishing. Grant, Michael  Jacobelli, Luciana Gladiators at Pompeii.
Rome: "L'Erma" di Bretschneider. Junkelmann, Marcus University of California Press. Juvenal ; G. Ramsay, trans. Juvenal and Perseus: Satires. Loeb Classical Library. Juvenal; Lewis Evans, trans. Shadrake, Susanna The World of the Gladiator.
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