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The main training schools for gladiators were in Capua, south of Rome. Some gladiators were volunteers (mostly freedmen or very low classes of freeborn men) who chose to take on the status of a slave for the monetary rewards or the fame and excitement. Anyone who became a gladiator was automatically infamis, beneath the law and by definition not a respectable citizen. A small number of upper-class men competed in the arena but they constituted a special, esoteric form of entertainment

A little ivory head of gladiator from Pompeii - Naples, Archaeological Museum

Gladiator Graveyard, Ephesus, Turkey The Gladiator Graveyard site is located in Ephesus, Turkey and containes the mixed remains of about 67 individuals, all of whom where under the age of 30. The gladiators who fought here were the professional athletes of ancient Roman times and they would battle each other, wild animals, or even condemned criminals for the amusement of the masses.

Gladiator tombstone The gravestone of Roman gladiator Diodorus, who was buried 1,800 years ago in Turkey.

bronze figurine of gladiator: greaves, small shield, helmet with horns and crest; Roman, first-second century CE London, British Museum. arena, sport, combat

Funerary relief for a gladiator named Seilonis. Museum of Ephesus, Turkey.

Ruins of Ephesus, Turkey..... It was one of the largest cities in the Mediterranean world. Ephesus was one of the seven churches of Asia that are cited in the Book of Revelation.The Gospel of John may have been written here.The city was the site of several 5th century Christian Councils, (see Council of Ephesus). It is also the site of a large gladiators' graveyard.

Mosaic of gladiators preparing for their appearance in the arena

Scissor This rather odd-looking weapon was used in the arenas by the gladiators of the ancient Roman Empire. Interestingly enough, the gladiators who wielded the scissor in combat were also known as scissors. The metal casing at the bottom formed a long tube that covered the gladiator’s arm, allowing the weapon to easily block and parry, as well as counterattack. Made from hardened steel, the scissor measured up to one and a half feet long.