Archaeological Museum of Bologna

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Relief with a gladiatorial scene

In the relief, now fragmented, it's represented the final moment of a gladiatorial show.

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Found in the necropolis that extended along the eastern part of the Via Aemilia about 3 kilometres from Bologna, it decorated the side of a funerary monument with a large dado base. The scene depicts part of a gladiatorial spectacle with three figures. A Thracian is portrayed on the left with a square shield, tall greaves and a short curved sword. The central portion shows the final phase of the duel between the gladiators, in which one of the fighters has raised his oval shield to signal his victory over his adversary, who is kneeling and has put his shield over his head. The figured subject of this relief was probably intended to commemorate the generosity of the dead man, who offered the city a gladiator fight.

Provenance: Bologna, nearby Due Madonne
Datation: Late Republic (end of the 1st century BC)
Material: Sandstone
Dimensions: altezza cm 110; larghezza cm 120
Inventory #: 1329

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