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article imageVivid fresco depicting gladiators discovered in Pompeii

By Karen Graham     Oct 11, 2019 in Science
A vivid fresco depicting an armor-clad gladiator standing victorious as his wounded opponent stumbles gushing blood has been discovered in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii, Italy's culture ministry said Friday.
The fresco is 3 feet by 4.5 feet and depicts the end of a fight between two gladiators, a murmillo and a Thracian. A "Murmillo" fighter wearing a plumed, wide-brimmed helmet with visor, holds his large rectangular shield aloft in his left hand, as he grips his short sword in the right.
On the ground in front of the victor lies the shield of the defeated "Thraex" who has suffered deep wounds and is on the point of collapse, according to Phys.org.
The fresco was uncovered in what experts think was a tavern frequented by gladiators
The fresco was uncovered in what experts think was a tavern frequented by gladiators
Handout, PRESS OFFICE OF THE POMPEI ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK/AFP
Archaeologists at the Archaeological Park of Pompeii discovered the striking scene in gold, blue and red on a wall below a staircase in what was believed to be a tavern. “Very probably the fresco decorated a place used by gladiators, perhaps a watering hole . also frequented by prostitutes,” said Massimo Osanna, director-general of the archeological park, reports the Associated Press.
“We are in Regio V, not far from where there was a barracks for gladiators, where among other things, there was graffiti referring to this world. Of particular interest in this fresco is the extremely realistic representation of the wounds,” said Osanna, adding that the outcome of the fight is unknown. The losing gladiator is holding up his finger to “implore for mercy,” he noted.
Fresco in the House of the Chaste Lovers  a rich baker's home  with garden  stables  mill and a...
Fresco in the House of the Chaste Lovers, a rich baker's home, with garden, stables, mill and a sumptuous fresco of a tender kiss, in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii
Eliano IMPERATO, AFP
Regio V excavations yield many discoveries
The ancient city of Pompeii, buried by a violent eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 CE has been a virtual history book - giving us a brief glimpse into the cultural and socioeconomic climate at that time. Excavations at Regio V began about two years ago and have yielded dozens of discoveries as part of the EU-funded Great Pompeii Project.
A frescoed “fast food” counter, or thermopolium, was found in March and another fresco, depicting the mythological hunter Narcissus enraptured by his own reflection in a pool of water was discovered in February. Human remains, including a the skeletons of a woman and three children were also found, huddled together in a villa. Also recently found was the remains of a harnessed horse and saddle.
In August 2019  a stash of ancient amulets was discovered by archaeologists in Pompeii. They unearth...
In August 2019, a stash of ancient amulets was discovered by archaeologists in Pompeii. They unearthed the treasures from under a pile of ash dating to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.
Archaeological Park of Pompeii
In 2018, a grim reminder of the horrific eruption of Mt. Vesuvius was discovered at a freash excavation site at a crossroads that revealed a skeleton with a large block of stone crushing its head. The researchers believe the unlucky victim likely survived the first phase of the eruption, perhaps hiding in an alley, now covered in a thick layer of lapilli, or rock fragments hurled by the volcano.
The body was found at the height of the first floor of an adjacent building, well above the layer of rock fragments. Here he was struck by the dense pyroclastic flow which threw him back. "A formidable stone block (perhaps a door jamb), violently thrown by the volcanic cloud, collided with his upper body, crushing the highest part of the thorax and yet-to-be-identified head," the researchers say.
A depiction of the eruption which buried Pompeii (from BBC s Pompeii: The Last Day).
A depiction of the eruption which buried Pompeii (from BBC's Pompeii: The Last Day).
Unknown author / Wikimedia Commons
The ruins of Pompeii in southern Italy are the second most visited tourist site in the country, after the Colosseum in Rome, with more than 3.6 million visitors in 2018. As part of the multi-million dollar restoration project - the ancient city is undergoing its most extensive excavations since the 1950s, Archaeologists are removing tons of debris from long-buried areas of the city.
More about Gladiators, Pompeii, Fresco, Regio V, Archaeologists
 
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